2023-11-29 19:57

Kobus van Wyk

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
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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