By Roxanne Daniels
A small room attached to the Centre for Social Development on Rhodes Campus is filled with all sorts of materials that would ordinarily be thrown away or put into a recycling bin. To many, a lot of the items seem useless after they have been used for their original purpose. This Waste Centre, otherwise known as Eyethu, has a dedicated worker in charge who thinks otherwise.
Sarah Larkin, a Bachelor of Fine Arts student at Rhodes, sorts donated items, bags them to make packages for schools and lays them out on a shelf for display. She invites schools to come to Eyethu to take items to be used for arts and crafts or anything related to education. Also on display are examples of what can be made from the ‘waste’ material.
There is a tambourine made from a plastic plate, wire and bottle tops, a toy car made from cardboard and toilet paper rolls, a counter for maths made from an egg box and a string instrument made from a big plastic bottle and wire. They are all sitting on the shelf waiting to encourage educators to use any and every resource as a teaching aid, creative arts, props, games and toys. Sarah smiles while recalling the times that teachers leave the room feeling inspired and motivated to be creative with their resources.
“We value the mutual learning between Eyethu and the teachers that come to use the resources”.
Eyethu was started by the Centre for Social Development and has been running for some time. But this year, Sarah is now in the room on Tuesdays and Fridays between 3 and 5pm, sorting out the materials and welcoming in educators who come in to pick up material. She is also there to assist with workshops that the Centre has facilitated, teaching teachers how to use resources available to them. The teachers do not only learn from Sarah and the Centre, Eyethu benefits from teachers providing their own ideas as well. Sarah said that it is important to create a mutual learning relationship between Eyethu and the people it is there for.
For more information regarding what is currently in stock or how to donate/request materials, contact Sarah on 082 571 0167 or email her to be part of the mailing list on g14L8527@campus.ru.ac.za.