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101 450 children reached

101 450 children reached

101 450 children reached

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7 000 Practitioners trained

7 000 Practitioners trained

7 000 Practitioners trained

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Help us reach 1 million children every year by 2030

Help us reach 1 million children every year by 2030

Help us reach 1 million children every year by 2030

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Giving Bright Futures an Early Start

Giving Bright Futures
an Early Start

SmartStart was established in 2015 to close the access gap to early learning opportunities. These remain out of reach for the majority of children, especially those in underserved communities

From the outset, SmartStart and its partners knew that an entirely new solution was needed. One that could be delivered at speed and scale at grassroots’ level, and integrate every aspect of the early learning value chain.

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How?

How?

By harnessing the power of partnership, community,
and collaboration, SmartStart provides a unique National Delivery Platform that addresses the lack of affordable, quality early learning programmes, the shortage of pre-schools and the dire need for trained and licensed practitioners, while creating new employment opportunities.

The SmartStart Early Learning Programme has been developed to:

1) Improve young children’s readiness for learning, school performance and overall success in life.

2) Be delivered by Early Learning Practitioners – smart, caring individuals from the local communities that are specially recruited, trained and licensed by SmartStart and its partners.

Today, we support a rapidly expanding nationwide network of Early Learning Practitioners who are licensed to implement our quality early learning programme for children aged between three and fives years.

Our Vision

Our Vision

Every child in South Africa has access to quality early learning programmes.

Our Mission

Our Mission

To ensure all children have the right foundations in place to succeed, while creating employment and social enterprise opportunities, and stimulating economic activity in our most under-resourced communities.

Our Strategic Objectives

Our Strategic Objectives

To close the early learning access gap, we need to:

Close the early learning Opportunity gap

Close the early learning Supply gap

Close the early learning Funding gap

Our Executive Team

Meet our Executive Team

The growing SmartStart team is responsible for orchestrating processes, systems and support to the SmartStart network.

Click on the smiles to meet the SmartStart teams.

Grace Matlhape

Chief Executive Officer

Leading a team that’s changing the country one child at a time and staying ahead by putting our best foot forward, always.

Kuben Pillay

Chief Financial Officer

Sane Mdlalose

Chief Growth Officer

I believe that one’s success in life and their ability to learn and grow, is a not only a function one’s natural intellect or aptitude, but also a function of the level of exposure one gets over years.

Nomvula Matlare

Brand & Communications Lead

Calisto Kondowe

Development Co-Lead

….

Thandeka Mabaso

Kwa-Zulu Natal Branch Manager

Samantha Maasdorp

Network Strategist

Working with a network of practitioners who are reshaping the ECD landscape, making affordable, quality early learning services accessible to every child.

Azola Fali

Operations Lead

Jon Hodgson

People & OD Lead

SmartStart is a systemic effort to afford early play-learning to all (for the practice of freedom). I can enable SmartStart’s people to do better work together.

Hopolang Selebalo

Policy & Advocacy Lead

Justine Jowell

Programme Design Lead

My passion for early learning started while working with young people at risk, and experiencing the impact of the lack of nurturing and stimulating environments on children and young adults as they grow. I love working for SmartStart as I have the privilege of being part of supporting and creating opportunities for nurturing relationships and quality early learning  environments for children that are so critical to their, and our country’s, success.