One of the Rainbow Centre’s key strategies is to focus on the young to ensure that, by the time they are old enough to go to mainstream school at five, they have everything they need to gain acceptance, are academically able, emotionally adjusted and in good health.
Since 2007, two pre-school classes have been run each year for 40 children who live in extreme poverty. All teachers are sent on government accredited training courses. The Rainbow Centre runs its pre-school according to a national curriculum but also gives extra classes in English, Maths, General Knowledge and Art. To date the Rainbow Centre has placed a total of 140 children in the mainstream system, mostly from its pre-school. Rainbow Centre children continue to come top of their class in the mainstream system.
Rainbow Centre children who are in the mainstream school system are taken to school on the Rainbow Centre bus. Their daily attendance is monitored, their needs for educational supplies met and they have access to the Rainbow Centre’s medical programme. English classes are given to these children at the Rainbow Centre during term time. Many of the children spend their school holidays at the Centre where they are involved in special classes and activities. The Rainbow Centre maintains close contact with all the children’s parents and families.
The Rainbow Centre’s nursery provides babies with nutrition and safe care and this feeds into the day-care centre for the under threes who are then prepared for entry into the Centre’s two pre-school classes for children aged three to five. Subsequently, all these children will graduate on to school in the mainstream system. These programmes have been a remarkable success – putting an end to malnutrition, providing essential medical care and enabling mothers to return to work and support their families.