Waves for Change, also known as W4C was founded by Tim Conibear whose philanthropy started in 2009 after starting a small surfing club at the Masiphumelele Township. Together with local volunteers Apish Tshetsha and Bongani Ndlovu, the trio quickly identified surfing as a productive way to engage youths in sharing their personal challenges and grievances faced within the community.
After pairing up with leading mental health professionals, the team developed a programme known as Surf Therapy, aimed to relieve the emotional and psychological effects of daily exposure to violence and stress. Early surfing lessons showed that participants noted improved feelings of belonging, strength, trust and confidence reducing the risk of anti-social behavior and repetitive cycles of aggression.
Ripple Reading is an NGO that focuses its resources on basic literacy as well as leadership development from fundamental levels of education. Their mission is to develop a model of effective intervention that teaches children how to read with understanding in a safe environment, building up confidence and assisting learners to take control of their lives – academically, socially and emotionally.
What a treat to work with the energetic team of the Sozo Organisation!
The Sozo Foundation was founded by youth workers, Anton and Elana Cuyler who recognized an aggressive need for transformation within the Cape Flat community of Vrygrond, Cape Town which is notorious for abusive social behavior, violence and gangsterism.
The foundation runs five core projects - Educentre, Eden, Design, Care and Youth Café – each specifically designed to promote education, skills, youth and wellbeing to promote better living conditions and basic human rights. Together with a core team of highly skilled professionals, the Sozo Tribe work hard to fill the lives of the impoverished community with dignity, hope and purpose.
Stay Safe is a registered NPO that empowers young girls and women with life skills in self-protection and general safety at home and in the work place. The initiative takes shape through a series of workshops and training sessions conducted by a team of 8 highly trained and experienced self-defence practitioners captained by Sanette Smit, author of The South Africa Woman’s Guide to Self-Defence, and is even endorsed by legendary singer, philanthropist and political activist, Annie Lennox.
Sunfield Homes in Wellington is a centre for intellectually disabled adults. Their residents are individual who are unable to function without guidance and protection. The reasons for their diminishing intellectual abilities can be because of injury at birth, due to a motor vehicle accident, sickness, environmental deficiencies, congenital or genetics, like Down Syndrome, Foetal Alcohol Syndrome or oxygen deprivation at birth.
Rainbow of Hope
Rainbow House can provide care for up to 14 children. The range of facilities available to the care givers are well utilized and include occupational therapy, medical care, psychological support from qualified practitioners as well as healthy exercise, musical stimulation and art therapy to ensure the downward spiral is curbed and reversed. Rainbow House also offers a wide range of workshops in conjunction with other NGO’s) for prospective parents looking to foster or adopt a child, equipping them with the skills and understanding required to care and the support once the child is ready to leave the haven.
The pressure to deliver education at grass roots level in South Africa has never been higher especially when you consider the lack of funds within the majority of under-resourced areas within our beloved country. Abiding by standardized curriculums and retaining leaders with valuable skill sets is only half the battle but to create a genuine culture, an environment where children can thrive and truly have a sense of pride and belonging is what really puts the Bottomup approach on top.
It was both encouraging and inspirational to work with Bottomup last week, a non-profit organization that positions itself as a catalyst for organizational change in under resourced schools in the Grassy Park, Lotus River and Ottery areas. Bottomup work with schools through their approach to leverage existing resources to improve and enhance a child’s environment.
If you are interested in making a donation to the programme or if you would like to become a volunteer, visit www.bottomup.org.za
The Haven Night Shelter
I met with the managing director Hassan Khan and his assistant Waheeda who took the time to explain their concept, aim and mission around the Haven Night Shelter! We decided to initiate a campaign that Hassan been wanting to do for a couple of years called 'Spot the homeless'. The idea was to create a campaign of awareness where people can identify, relate and realize how close to home this could be. Anyone can be homeless, it takes one bad decision, one wrong move. The project started by capturing the entire Haven community, from the Board members and staff to the residents and visitors residing in the old age home.
The aim was to create opportunities for adults living on the streets that are committed to reintegration, by supplying temporary shelter, physical care, rehabilitation opportunities and social welfare services. Alongside this they try to reduce the opportunities to continue life on the streets by also promoting community awareness and encourage the public to alleviate the social problems that arise.
I was introduced to Zelda not knowing much about the Chaeli Campaign. After she told me their vision and history I was too excited not to get involved! The amazing thing is that the Chaeli campaign was started by five young girls, aged between 6 and 12. Chaeli and her sister, Erin along with their friends, Tarryn, Justine and Chelsea, all sisters, started the campaign to raise R20 000 for Chaeli's motorized wheelchair. This they did by selling cards and Sunshine Pots, which are DIY miniature pot plants. The cards displayed artworks of Erin and Chaeli and is still available.
We decided to photograph the children in the preschool as gift for their parents as well as portraits of the staff that works the magic day to day.
SAYes is a non-profit organization that trains and supports volunteers to mentor vulnerable young people. Gillian Anderson and Michelle Potter founded the organization for young people living in children’s homes in South Africa since 2008.
Their purpose is to inspire and inform leaders of social change through mentoring. Their mission is to improve social impact, reducing social inequality by creating and supporting youth programmes to do better.
SAYes facilitates and supports social initiatives like first time career opportunities for young people with mentor guidance to make a visible impact, including many youth programmes and services run by non-profits and government organizations. These programmes are well researched and aim to improve independence and well-being, creating youths that are able to make informed choices and follow healthy practices.
The team of support specialists are trained counselors, educators, coaches and social workers who coordinate information, resources and opportunities among partners, volunteers and programmes. Their purpose is to "ignite opportunities for social change by providing a professional and personalised service to each mentor-mentee match".
I met Vivian Mthwesi while working on a project for CTO. Vivian runs a pre-school in Khayelitsha. She asked me to help with taking pictures of the kids for graduation. She was such an inspiration in her approach to educate and to guide.
Vivian started by opening her home to 7-9 children in 2008 and now she's accommodating 40-70 children between the ages of 1-6 years. With the help of her family, Vivian dreams of developing the school through sustainability.
As pre-schools do not reach the governmental standard of requirements, Non Profit Organisations have to step in to cover this very important phase in a child’s life.
To get involved:
Vivian Mthwesi - 071 814 0120
CTO - email@example.com
The Bookery aims to provide and support school libraries that are under resourced in South Africa. According to them, there is a dramatic shortage in school libraries where over 90% of public schools in South Africa don't even have one functional library.
For more than 30 years, the Primary Science Programme's work in the professional development of teachers has been driven by commitment, passion and a 'can-do' attitude towards improving the quality of teaching and learning, particularly in critical subjects such as Maths, Science and Linguistics in some of the poorest and most under-resourced primary schools.
I decided to approach the first one-stop center in the country for women, youth and children who have experienced domestic and / or sexual violence in their lives. The vision of the SBCWC is the creation of a safe and secure society within a human rights culture where women and children are empowered to exercise their full rights.
I was so lucky to have met Frida from Project Playground and to gift her whole team with family portraits. Project Playground is a non-profit organization aiming to improve the life opportunities of children and youth through organised social activities and sports with focus on the individual.