Showing posts from December, 2014

Village of Hope: A Little Bit of Hope this Christmastide

by Tim Walker, Project Manager at Village of Hope Father Christmas over-worked in Waterworks! During the last week, we have been preparing ourselves for the festive season with our annual sleigh rides into the community and giving Christmas gifts to friends and families in the community (including live chickens to some of our mentors), as well as helping the children who live with us understand the 'real meaning' behind all the bright lights and carols. It's also fantastic to be able to provide the children with some of the traditional pleasures that we have grown up with. It's not all about looking forward to the presents, but we have lit an advent candle every evening as we count the sleeps to the big day (thanks Nana!) along with decorating the unit with some of the decorations we bought from England. However, our biggest news this week is that one of our little ones received his Christmas present early as he was reunited with his family in the East

Village of Hope: Summertime Fun

Last week, the local schools closed for summer so we have had a bit more time to spend with the children in the unit who are already crawling off the walls and proving to be a bit of a handful to our dedicated house moms (who are also nearing the end of the year and having to plan and prepare for their own family Christmas). Katie has been preparing some morning time activities for the older children, but as we celebrated another public holiday on Tuesday we decided to take all the children, house moms and volunteers to the local beach for an afternoon of fun. Looking back, it seems that we have done this each and every Heritage Day, and it's amazing to see the children's reactions as they get time to play in the sand and swim in the sea. They are such a pleasure to be with and I think every child dipped their toes in the sea with some taking it a little bit further by actually trying to body board! Greg made a huge and complex sand castle trying to replicate the Fr

Village of Hope: Three Siblings are Reunited

by Tim Walker, Project Manager at Village of Hope Yesterday, we said our sad goodbyes to three of our wonderful boys - sibling brothers, who arrived with us in early September. Since they arrived, the youngest started walking and the older two were able to restart their morning placements at a local creche where they have really thrived. As with many of our children, these boys come from a complex family situation. However, it's great to see them reunited with their grandmother who is now able to provide a secure and loving home for these three boys. We will obviously keep close ties with the family, providing help and support where required as they settle into their new surroundings, we will miss these little guys who have kept us entertained and who have really captured our hearts. However, a home placement is our best out come for any child so we wish them well and a happy Christmas with their family!

Village of Hope: December 2014 News

Children’s Unit The end of the calendar year also sees the end of the school year here in South Africa, so we’ve been busy with various end of year events for the kids. Some of our children are finishing pre-primary and moving into primary school which is a real landmark. We have also been able to discharge one little boy back to his parents and our little girl with cerebral palsy is doing fantastically – she can now walk with just one stick and her balance is improving every day. Our relationships with the social workers are continuing to strengthen, and Emma now has weekly touch points with them to keep abreast of all the situations. We’ve  also been working hard at doing lots of paperwork and getting more policies and procedures in place as well as sorting budgets for next year. Although this is sometimes monotonous and mind-boggling, it is very worthwhile and necessary! Last week, we took the staff to the Caledon Spa for their end of year treat. The destination was a surpri

Graceland: Finishing 2014 Strong

by Simone Van Der Berg, Principal and Project Manager at Graceland Preschool One of the most exciting events happened at Graceland on 12 November 2014. It was the opening of the new library! The first idea of a library at Graceland started with Zoë Lee, however, due to the need of another classroom, we decided to move the library to the loft where our storage was. Thanks to Imperial Managed Logistics, this dream was turned into a reality. Imperial Managed Logistics funded the staircase and the renovations to make it safe and beautiful. Right now the Library is only available to children who attend the preschool, but in future we would like to make it available to Devonvallei Primary as well. We are working on a system that will allow children to take books home and return them after a certain period. However, we will only be able to extend the availability once a proper system is in place.

Mama Themba: 2014 in Review

by Frances Fuchs, Project Manager at Mama Themba Year 9 in the existence of Bosom Buddies has brought some changes and challenges, laughter and tears, new relationships and strengthening of old bonds. Some of the highlights: Bosom Buddies becomes Mama Themba! Probably the highlight of the year for us, and a proud moment. The name change has been a while coming. Our new name signifies our unity with our parent organisation, Thembalitsha Foundation, as well as our increased focus on the MOTHER. We love mothers. Our existence and all our efforts are geared towards the empowerment and education of mothers. As fellow mothers, we know and understand too well that the intense way in which a mother loves is immeasurable; that our love is without boundaries and can't be counted and compared. That even when we mess up and our children get hurt, the pain is unbearable. This is why we teach mothers how to care for their babies, what we know is best for their babies, while they get conf

Thembacare Grabouw: December 2014 News

by Thandi Sililo, Project Manager at ThembaCare Grabouw One cannot believe that 2014 is almost over, and what a year it has been! As the year draws to an end, it is impossible to not be able to reflect on all the activities that have happened at ThembaCare Grabouw, and to reflect on all the much needed care and support that has been offered to all our HIV, TB, cancer and terminally ill patients and their families through our In Patient and Home-Based Care Units. Ensuring that a patient was "pain free" or died with dignity, love, and care and was able to access medical and nursing care, was a special privilege! Being able to continue to provide HIV and TB health education and awareness through the HIV Counselling team in the community, schools and surrounding farms was invaluable, so that patients could make informed life choices and decisions! In the midst of caring for our patients, our Care staff have been quite busy attending training sessions that were facilitated