XVIII Cost of light

For every item on the list

  There is a cost attached

It’s time to open the tight fist

  These costs must now be matched

 

The schools of priv’lege have much more

  – A most uneven field –

Their own funds in their labs can pour

  Most parents there – well heeled

 

For most poor schools there is no cash

  There is no steady flow

Between so many needs – a clash –

  No way their funds can grow

 

When dealing with a school that’s poor

  The progress may be slow

Of one thing one can be quite sure

  Their funds are very low

 

In fairness do expect that they

  Won’t have a lot to spare

They hardly have a bean to pay

  Of that be well aware

 

Is their case then a hopeless one

  Those who can’t give a thing

Will they be robbed of joy and fun

  That I T programmes bring

 

No this can never be allowed

  Act with integrity

They’ll be involved – this has been vowed –

  Preserve their dignity

 

A chance too good to miss is there

  For schools both poor and rich

Each one can now have their own share

  To I T they can switch

 

There are some tasks that could come free

  Performed by volunteers

Send out to all an urgent plea

  And target willing ears

 

Dads unemployed can do some work

  In lieu of unpaid fees

For such ones it’s a welcome perk

  At this they should not sneeze

 

They can break down a wall or two

  Fix that loose ceiling board

There are paint jobs that they can do

  This poor ones could afford

 

The moms may likewise be involved

  Some light tasks they can do

There’s dirt on floors that must be solved

  And rubble to wade through

 

When moms get stuck into building

  Their dreams now realized

See how they paint and do digging

  Don’t be at all surprised

 

At times they may plan a cake sale

  A fun fair or bazaars

Their well planned raffles never fail

  Can pay for burglar bars

 

The scourge of Africa avoid

  It does destroy the soul

Stand tall – even when unemployed

  Don’t wave the beggar’s bowl

 

Most schools will find some avenues

  To cover at least part

And even with short revenues

  They eagerly will start

 

But once they have distributed

  The bit they can afford

To them must be contributed

  They must have some reward

 

There is a possibility

  Poor schools can get some dough

From those in the community

  Whose funds are not as low

 

Successful businessmen may be

  Supportive of schools’ needs

It is quite likely they will see

  How they can sow some seeds

 

Invest in education now

  Build the economy

Reap later from where now you plow

  This – a sound policy

 

Returns will not immediate be

  Pay back will not be fast

Bread cast on waters comes to thee

  Perhaps when years have passed

 

All learners in the school today

  Tomorrow – the work force

Prospective clients – who will pay

  Keep business on safe course

 

Perhaps one company can give

 The means to cool the air

From yet another source receive

  A table or a chair

 

Or else someone may wheel and deal

  For chairs on your behalf

If you can get them for a steal

  May cut your cost in half

 

Do save a penny where you can

  It is for a good cause

On asking there is not a ban

  Such efforts get applause

 

There are more places one could try

  Local Authorities

The name they are known better by

  Municipalities

 

Resources that are in their hand

  They make available

Such help saves schools a few good Rand

  Makes labs attainable

 

All things which are mechanical

  Are well within their scope

As well as those electrical

  For this one too can hope

 

One must approach them – plead the case –

  Where local laws permit

Public resources – put in place

  These must to schools commit

 

All holes are covered bit by bit

  See how the picture grows

The smallest gift is made to fit

  Into the plan it goes

 

Commitment of community

  Has other benefits

It works towards security

  Protects computer bits

 

Their buy-in you must thus obtain

  Right from the very start

This help is needed to maintain

  Each single little part

 

Involve local communities

  Consult them all the way

And give them opportunities

  That they too have their say

 

There are much bigger donors too

  Their gifts are liberal

Those contributions help one do

  A task monumental

 

Investments that are corporate

  – Though they are social too –

Support schools that are desperate

  To carry progress through

 

Their conscience hereby they do ease

  And give back what they owe

It is the poor they aim to please

  Where good-will then will grow

 

The project plan notes every gift

  Small ones as well as great

Kind acts let poor schools’ spirits lift

  This all appreciate

 

When all gifts are accounted for

    Donations are in place –

There’s bound to be a need for more

  To cover every base

 

The project funding then kicks in

  It’s funded by the State

At this point Khanya will begin

  To put some on the plate

 

It should be very clear by now

  There are no fixed amounts

What one for each school does allow

  The school’s need is what counts

 

All the donations schools receive

  Allow Khanya to stretch

Its funds quite far – you can believe –

  Which great results will fetch

 

So Khanya ends up doing more

  Than what the budgets state

With prudent spending at the core

  Increase deliv’ry rate

 

The cost schedule is now complete

  And finances defined

It is by no means a small feat

  To write one of this kind

 

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