“Life in Lockdown – South African style.”
As experienced by Belinda from Home-School Tutoring West Berkshire
Carolyn, our Area Advisor for Home-School Tutoring West Berkshire ( and also Oxfordshire) has a wonderful team of tutors. One of her successful tutors, Belinda is currently in lockdown in South Africa. Belinda recently got in touch with Carolyn, telling her about her lockdown experience and how she is thankful for technology and to be able tutor online.
Belinda ( normally based in Berkshire) is currently working as a volunteer Maths tutor at the ‘Masithandane Centre’ in a township called Smutsville, South Africa. The centre is run by a non-profit and public benefit organisation in the Eden District in Sedgefield which is funded by her local church. Back in 2007 a need was identified to establish a literacy and numeracy project in the area. Belinda feels passionate about her work in South Africa and has established a strong connection with the children over the past few years which she finds very rewarding.
Back in mid-March, she had returned to SA from a 3-day trip to the UK and was immediately forced into a 2-week isolation as she had flown in from a ‘high risk’ country (UK). This meant complete isolation at home: no going out, exercising or mixing with people during this period as well as no online shopping (no deliveries) This was followed by 5 weeks of lockdown in South Africa which continues. Belinda says:
It’s pretty tough going! Parks and beaches, churches and hotels are all closed. No alcohol sales are permitted. The police and army are patrolling streets.
Belinda is used to running and has taken up running around the house for exercise, 180 laps gives her 10km.
I listen to audiobooks and podcasts to break the monotony and I do a cross-fit class via Telegram.
She has continued the Maths tuition with her three Berkshire Home-School Tutoring students via Skype as well : two are GCSE students and one is A level. She says,
My UK students are pleased to see me as their Skype lessons are the only ‘normal’ (pre-lockdown) events in their lives at present. Technology and the internet has been so essential for keeping us all in touch with the ‘outside world’ and to continue our teaching and learning, during these unprecedented and challenging times.
Belinda is also pleased to see her students on Skype as she has not had any in-person contact with friends or colleagues for some weeks now. Life continues with her preparing lessons for her Maths tutoring. She looks forward to being able to run on the beach again.
Belinda has a background in Meteorology and Maths. She achieved an MSc in Meteorology from Reading University and worked for the Met Office as a Dispersion Scientist for 25 years (a Dispersion Scientist works out how pollution is spread in the atmosphere).
She discovered her passion for tutoring when she worked and volunteered to teach Maths at a local school in Berkshire as part of a School Liaison Scheme and went on to complete her STEM and Mentoring training which further fuelled her passion and she decided to reduce her hours and ultimately leave her Dispersion Modelling job (2017) to become a full time Maths and Physics tutor – up to GCSE level. This then led her to connection with the South African project.
If you are considering online tutoring for your child or someone at home. Please do get in touch with us, we are here to help you and would be delighted to discuss with your current learning and schooling needs. Do call us for a no-obligation chat.
If you live in the Berkshire and Oxfordshire area, do contact Carolyn directly on:
T: 07506 117169