Early childhood development is at the heart of SASKO’s Siyasizana Project

Early Childhood Development is one of the many challenges our nation faces and, in light of the fact that children develop 85% of their brain structure by the time they are five years old, it is critical that this key developmental time frame is used to full effect establishing key foundations of learning that will carry them through their formative years and into the job market.

Reading is one of the keys to successful learning and with this in mind, SASKO has reached all communities across South Africa since 1930, focuses its Siyasizana Project on providing pre-primary and primary school children with reading books and educational material.

A nationwide project, SASKO Siyasizana seeks to promote a love of reading in children while simultaneously educating them and the communities at large on the benefits of recycling.

“Siyasizana means ‘we are helping each other’. We decided to focus on early childhood education initially because it is key in uplifting communities and providing opportunities for the next generation,” says Lee-Anne Engelbrecht, Marketing Executive for SASKO at Pioneer Foods.

The project operates by encouraging schools to collect used SASKO bread and flour bags that are exchanged for reading material in the form of the SASKO Sam range of storybooks. The book series details the adventures of SASKO Sam and his five loveable friends, Rhino, Buffalo, Lion, Leopard and Elephant. Each story aims to teach young readers – as well as their teachers and parents – valuable lessons that they can apply to their own lives.

In 2019, more than 50 000 books have been donated to in excess of 184 schools and more than one million bread bags have been recycled.

The Siyasizana Project is just one of the programmes that SASKO is running to bring across its brand essence, caring baking expert. The company has always focused on making a difference in the lives of regular South Africans.

SASKO – a brand that forms part of Pioneer Foods, a business that specialises in the production, distribution and sale of food and beverages – has been separating the wheat from the chaff and producing soft, fluffy loaves of bread in the process for almost 90 years.

“When you make something with care, it’s bound to taste better,” says Engelbrecht. “Our bakers put care into everything they do, using their expertise to make the freshest bread and flour. Wanting the best for people is proof that you care and this is the reason why South Africans have trusted us for so long. They can taste SASKO’s care in every bite of their favourite sandwich or slice of cake.”