Statement by the City’s Executive Mayor, Patricia de Lille New Netreg ECD Centre to provide a safe and caring environment for children City of Cape Town Executive Mayor, Patricia de Lille, today joined the construction team at the Golden Gate ECD in Netreg, to help put some of the finishing touches on the centre. Read more below: In line with the City of Cape Town Town’s strategic objective to build safe, caring communities, we have set aside R25,4 million for the construction of three new Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres in Netreg, Delft and Bridgetown. In this financial year, R10,5 million will be spent on these three ECDs. A total of R4,6 million will go towards the Netreg Golden Gate Early Childhood Development Centre, which is set for completion in October. This investment will bring much needed social upliftment to the community of Netreg in Bonteheuwel by providing children with a safe and caring, educational environment. The area of Netreg has many socio-economic challenges, and has for years experienced very little investment. The construction of this centre will do much to address the injustices of the past and forms part of the City's commitment to redress. One of the greatest investments we can make is in the development and education of children from an early age. That is why the City is committed to developing ECD centres, as early childhood development provides a crucial foundation for the overall development of children and the improvement of social conditions in our communities. Today, 8 September 2015, I visited the Golden Gate ECD in Netreg where construction teams are hard at work to ensure that we deliver to this community. I joined them to help with some painting as we put some of the finishing touches on the centre, which we will build into a centre of excellence along with the community. The Golden Gate ECD has been developed in close partnership with the community and it will be a community-driven and managed centre. The City’s Social and Early Childhood Development Directorate will be responsible for repairs and maintenance at the centre, while the Netreg community forum will operate the facility. It will accommodate 60 to 80 children between the ages of one and five and will have eight staff members. It will be equipped with toy libraries, books, internet services, videos and other educational material free of charge. This centre will also provide training facilities for other ECD practitioners. Books and educational material will be available for loan to other ECDs in the surrounding community. The Golden Gate centre was one of the City’s World Design Capital 2014 projects and it embodies the culmination of ideas from a team of engineers, project managers, architects, community members and councillors who brought design and ideas together to benefit the children and the greater community. Using design-led thinking, the team looked at geographic proximity, special interests, and other factors to address the needs and ensure the well-being of the children. In addition to the Golden Gate ECD, the City is also in the process of building two other ECDs in this financial year. The Nantes ECD in Bridgetown will cost R7,8 million and the Delft ECD will cost R13 million. These two centres are set to be completed towards the middle of 2016. We can never underestimate the importance of education and investing into the development of our children. Children who have access to opportunities and a solid foundation will be able to build a better future for themselves and realise their full potential. This can bring about the social shift that we desperately need to see in our communities. I therefore appeal to parents and the community to continue working with us and supporting our children to build a better future together.