Review of 2019 Newsletter
Welcome to our newsletter where you will find updates on all of our exciting projects and outreach programmes. In this edition we are reviewing all the exciting events that were held in 2019. We hope you enjoy it!
30 Year Anniversary
Last year was unbelievable year for us, and we celebrated the huge milestone of our 30-year anniversary! The Jubilee was a fantastic occasion and thousands of people from all over Cape Town and the Eastern Cape came to celebrate all that has been achieved in the 30 years since Baphumelele was founded by Mama Rosie. It was a day that we will never forget and would like to thank all sponsor’s, donors, volunteers and supporters who have worked with us over the years. During the Jubilee we made a resolution that by working hard together we will take this organisation to the next level and continue to make things even better for the children and people of Khayelitsha and all our local communities.
New Building at Fountain of Hope
2019 finally saw the start of the new building at the Fountain Of Hope. The new building is going to allow us to help and support even more youth. The new building is going to have a mixture of uses. Firstly, and most importantly, it is going to provide 18 new bunk beds; so that we have the capacity to accept a total of 36 new youth. Also included in the new building will be a mixture of offices and conference rooms, allowing us to hold, and run, bigger meetings as well as host more visitors at once. It is also very important to us that there are rooms available that can help in the development and support of the youth. As a result, there will also be rooms for counselling, music sessions and enough space for all
educational educational and recreational activities. We are very excited for the building to be completed, and cannot wait to use it.
An important aspect of Baphumelele is that as an organisation, we help provide job opportunities to people in the surrounding community, with an aim of helping lift them out of the cycle of poverty. We are proud to say that in the year of 2019, we have provided over 600 opportunities to members of the community. Our staff are incredibly hardworking and we would like to thank all of our staff in all of our projects for the time and effort they have put in, not just through 2019, but in all the 30 years that Baphumelele has existed.
Full to Capacity!
By the end of 2019 it is fair to say that we had reached full capacity! Our children’s home had reached full occupancy earlier in the year, however when it was brought to our attention that more children needed our help, Mama Rosie and the organisation decided to take the children into our care despite already being at our limit. On top of this, our Educare Centre and Grade R Pre-School is also fully enrolled. Our classrooms are full and the teachers and staff are enjoying bringing fun and vibrant lessons to so many local children. In regards to our hospice and respite centre’s; Clemens, which is our children’s hospice, is completely full, meaning that we are unable to take in anymore sick children in the near future. Our hope is that over time we can raise money to increase the number of beds and staff at Clemens so that we can reach as many children as possible. Bonita, our adult hospice and respite centre, is at 98% occupancy. We are pleased that our programmes are clearly helping adults and children in need, and we want to make sure that we can continue to do so and even expand the projects to an even greater scale.
Community Outreach Update
Our community outreach focus through 2019/2020, is that of child headed households. Child headed households are households in which due to circumstances, a child has had to step-up and take responsibility for the family. Child headed households are unfortunately a reality in the community, and the impact of the HIV pandemic has left lots of children without parents or guardians to look after them and hold the role of head of household. As a result, this has meant that many children have been forced into a situation where they are solely responsible for their younger siblings and supplying the resources needed to keep the family alive. Baphumelele is also in the process of building houses for 4 orphan families. These children currently do not have a safe and secure place they can call home and Mama Rosie and the organisation felt that it was immensely important that they receive a place to live as soon as possible.
Community Workshops and Sessions
After being introduced in 2018, our educational community programmes entered their first full year in 2019 and kept us all incredibly busy. The four programmes that we were implementing were: Families Matter! Yolo (You Only Live Once), Ke-Moja (I’m Fine Without Drugs), and Men championing Change.
In May 2019, we were honoured to host our Men Championing Change (MCC) dialogue with boys and men in the community, along with guests from House of Traditional Leaders. Some of the topics covered included boyhood, manhood, drugs, and the causes of gender-based violence. Other MCC sessions held this year tackled the difficult topics of ending femicide and tackling gender-based violence. In fact, in October we collaborated with: Kuyasa Clinic, TB/HIV Care, House of Traditional Leaders, and SAPS Harare Police Station; to develop and emergency response plan for gender-based violence in Khayelitsha.
In August 2019, all of our facilitators from all 4 programmes, united to implement Community Capacitation Enhancement with local leaders, with the aim to mobilise support for the programmes that we run in the community. Our teams demonstrated great proactiveness, leadership ability and networking skills to gather all the necessary people in the community into one place to discuss the best ways to implement positive change and help our communities.
We would also like the express our deepest gratitude to all the communities who have welcomed us, and our programmes with enthusiasm and open arms. We have been proud to work alongside all those in Khayelitsha, Nyanga, Phillipi, Samora and Gugulethu this past year.
Every year, thanks to many generous donors, we are able to have Christmas Celebrations, and 2019 was no different. We feel that it is very important for our children to have regular childhood experiences and not miss out on celebrations just because of their situations. Christmas time creates magical memories for children all over the world and for our children it is no different.
Part of the celebration includes handing out presents to all of our children on Christmas morning. The atmosphere was one of love and happiness and it really was a special day that everyone will remember for the rest of their life.
After the presents, and curtesy of our donors, we had a terrific Christmas Lunch. All children and adults enjoyed a selection of chicken, goat, and sausages, that were accompanied by a range of salads, before moving on to a selection of sweets and puddings for dessert. The entire day was filled with fun and laughter, and we look forward to doing the same all over again this year!
The year of a pandemic called COVID-19
The beginning of 2020 started off well, little did the world and South Africa know that within the space of 2 months the world would be hit with a pandemic. This year has been a challenging one for all and particularly for the poor communities of South Africa, over 2.5 million South African’s have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and South Africa having to close its doors to tourism and to business for the last 6 months. As a result of the financial pressures many businesses are facing, companies are not donating to Non Profit organisations and many of our fellow NPO’s are having to close their doors which places more pressure on those like ours that are just managing to survive thanks to donations from friends of Baphumelele and very strict monitoring of how to try to save money. The people most affected by the COVID are the poor, many of whom have lost the jobs they did have due to business closure and their employers losing their jobs. There are many domestic workers who have lost their jobs due to their employer no longer having work and there are many people within Khayelitsha itself who cannot afford to put food on the table. Baphumelele’s soup kitchen started increasing the number of plates of food made daily so that we can reach more people and children in the community who otherwise would go without food. Often the lines have been extremely long and stretched almost the entire length of the street. Our Respite Centre for adults has been kept very busy with sick patients as the hospital has not been able to cope due to this pandemic and our staff have been working tirelessly throughout this pandemic to ensure we can continue to provide a service to those in need. Our Bakery has continued to provide bread to our projects as well as to another company that has increased the number of loaves they buy from us in order to feed the ever increasing number of homeless and hungry in the City of Cape Town. Throughout the pandemic we have continued to hold workshops for our children as well as the children and adults within the community particularly workshops such as Men Championing Change relating to prevention of violence against woman and children and encouraging men to take responsibility and change bad behaviour patterns.
Our Educare centre has suffered tremendously during this pandemic as schools were closed and the children were not allowed to attend school. Our doors of our Educare only opened end of July so there are many children in Grade R who have missed almost a full year of basic education and who are starting Grade 1 next year at a huge disadvantage. We can only hope that this will not affect their future school careers.
What we have learnt from this pandemic and this difficult year is that we need to work together and support each other through the difficult times and the good times and hopefully not only can we help those in need, but we can make a better future for those around us and spread hope.
We would like to thank all our donors who have continued to support us through this period without whom we would not have been able to survive. We really appreciate you all and we are extremely grateful for your contributions and wishes and support!