Kayamandi is a suburb of Stellenbosch in the Western Cape province of South Africa located off route R304.
Our home is Kayamandi, one of the oldest townships in the Western Cape, located on the outskirts of Stellenbosch. The name means "nice home" in the Xhosa language, from khaya meaning "home" and mnandi meaning "nice". It is a vibrant community of predominantly Xhosa-speakers although both English and Afrikaans can also be heard on the streets.
Kayamandi was originally built to house black migrant labourers employed on the farms in the Stellenbosch area. In 1966, the nine largest employers in the Stellenbosch district including Stellenbosch University, the town administration, several vineyards and a fruit packing company united to erect 38 ready-made homes, so called hostels. These inadequate housing solutions and other Apartheid-era segregation policies have left the community with poor educational facilities and infrastructure and, as a result, limited economic opportunities.
Children growing up in the Kayamandi community are surrounded by unemployment, crime, and alcohol/drug addiction. Their universe of imagined opportunities is severely curtailed by this reality. On a practical level, the education and life guidance they receive in the formal system don’t equip them to break this cycle. Many children have entered our programme aged 12, and yet unable to read.
Kayamandi is a soccer-loving community with more than 20 teams. But with the arrival of Songo the cycling bug has well and truly bit.