Othandweni Family Care Centre
Othandweni Family Care Centre in Soweto is home to 30 children in the nursery, with a further 60 children accommodated in the five homes on the property. Each home is named after a life value of key importance to a developing child. At this facility, Jo’burg Child Welfare (JCW) strives to provide an environment that caters for the overall development of its residents that includes their physical, emotional, spiritual and educational needs. In short ... the sort of experience that a child would have in a balanced home environment.
Masibambisane Centre for Orphaned and Vulnerable Children
The Elton John Masibambisane Centre for Orphaned and Vulnerable Children established in 2003 is situated in Eldorado Park and provides services to members of the community in Eldorado Park, as well as to the neighbouring informal settlements of Kliptown, Mandela Square and Slovo Park.
Masibambisane provides psycho-social support, material assistance, homework supervision, life skills training, as well as bereavement and general counselling to children and young adults aged between 3 and 21. This support extends to the families of these children. Community outreach programmes are facilitated at schools, churches and community based organisations and more recently, a programme has been started for people living with HIV/Aids.
Princess Alice Adoption Home
The Princess Alice Adoption Home (PAAH) is a place of safety and the first loving home for many babies who have been abandoned, consented for adoption or orphaned. The babies in our care range in age from newborn to two years. All their needs are provided for until they are adopted, fostered or, as a very last resort, transferred to another child care facility.
PAAH also provides a safe haven for pregnant young women in crisis or who are destitute. During their stay, they receive counselling from JCW social workers and PAAH provides full accommodation and ensures that they receive appropriate pre- and antenatal care and are supported throughout the birth experience.
Funding from Nelson Mandela’s Peace Prize in 1994, enabled JCW to establish its Thembalethu project at the old Drill Hall situated in Johannesburg’s inner city area. At its inception, the focus of the project was on reaching out to girls living on the street. However, over the years the project has evolved into a hub of activity for residents in the area and it provides a multi-faceted service to the community.
A key activity at this project is the provision of training and guidance in beauty and nail care, as well as business skills to unemployed women with a view to the participants becoming economically active. We have realised that providing skills training is not enough to ensure employment and we therefore adopt a holistic approach that encompasses training and guidance in life skills, parenting skills, HIV/Aids and substance abuse.
A variety of outreach activities also forms part of the day-to-day operation of the centre. Information is distributed about Thembalethu itself and what the project is about, as well as raising awareness around social challenges such as human trafficking and HIV/Aids.
Many female residents in the area also approach Thembalethu for social assistance and they are generally referred on to other appropriate services. A proper referral system has been developed with clinics, shelters, rehabilitation centres and other services to which young women can be referred if specialised services are needed
We also have children from schools in the area that participate daily in our “A Chance to Play” project that focuses on teaching children valuable life skills and values through play.
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