‘Baking’ the world a better place

Factory manager Ferdi Smith explains how freshly baked roles are proofed and stamped.

Grade R and Grade 1 learners of Thorn Tree Academy in Bloubosrand went on a field trip to Lupo Bakery in Kya Sand.

It was the first field trip for the soon-to-be young bakers and teachers offered by bakery owner Massimo Lupini.

The bakery sponsors the school with about 1 000 bread rolls every week, which provides meals for the children at school.

Thorn Tree Academy children line up for the bus trip to Lupo Bakery.

When the academy opened in January last year, teachers battled to keep the children awake for lessons in the mornings. “We soon realised that many students were unable to eat breakfast before school, due to lack of financial stability within the home,” said Thorn Tree’s chief operating officer, Carla-Lee Kamp. As a thank you to ‘Mr Lupini’ the children created lovely thank you cards. This sparked the idea to invite the students to tour the bakery.

Excited mini bakers are all smiles at the big bread roll machine.


The youngsters mould and shape their dough creation.

Upon arrival at the bakery, all were suited up with their very own bakery shirt and cap. Tour guide Ferdi Smith treated the field trippers to a tour, explaining what each machine produced. Giant gingerbread men, croissants, hot dog rolls, and even croutons were on display. Sinking their little hands into bread dough was perhaps the most fun and each mini baker delightfully moulded and shaped their own doughy creation.

Bakery staff enjoyed showing the children what jobs they did.

Factory manager Ferdi Smith shows the children how to role a croissant.

Thorn Tree Academy has a dream to educate young minds from low-income and unemployed households through private quality education and multi-cultural interaction and life experiences. Lupo bakery provided a piece to this dream-puzzle by introducing the young minds to a broader landscape of career opportunities.

Precious Ndlovu rolls her dough into a spiral shape.

Each child is subsidised through the academy’s bursary programme, with many benefiting from a full bursary. The minimum required pass rate is 90 per cent, and two previous Thorn Tree children were recently named as the number one and two top achievers at local primary schools.

The children each received a huge box filled with a toy, juice and a warm and steamy bread loaf. They went back to the informal settlement – backpacks filled with bread, tummies filled with freshly baked goods, with many happy memories in their minds and hearts.


Thorn Tree Academy Grade R teacher Precious Ndlovu puts on her bakery uniform.


Young ones pay close attention to their doughy creations.


Children from Thorn Tree Academy left the bakery with freshly baked goods, juice and a toy. Photo: Supplied



GALLERY: Playground of dreams 

GALLERY and VIDEO: Christmas in Kya Sand

Details: Thorn Tree Academy 082 785 5010.

Ashtyn Mackenzie

Latest News

Recommended Story x
55 arrests for Honeydew police