The children tumble and play in the dirt outside the dilapidated tin shacks. Bony mange-covered dogs nose through the debris on the sides of the dusty roads. Where there is tarmac it is holed and pitted and filled with stinking water.
A tired emaciated woman comes to the door of her shack to check on her children.
‘Where is she going to get food to feed them today? Maybe her neighbour can help.’
She steps through the sand to the dilapidated corrugated iron fence and calls but her neighbour is in the same predicament. The children will have to eat the last crusts of dry bread today. ‘If only she could get a job, any job. Cleaning will do, anything will do.’ Since her husband left her for another woman she had been begging and scrounging for food.
This is Vrygrond outside Muizenberg in Cape Town South Africa.
Murder, Rape, Assault, Women and Child abuse, Alcohol and Drug Abuse, House Robbery, Theft, and Gang activity are daily occurrences in this area.
Vrygrond is reputedly the oldest informal settlement in South Africa, Originally a settlement of fisher folk who wanted to live close to the sea and their work; it has grown into a settlement of some 18,500 people of mixed nationalities with representation from adjoining African States and from places as far afield as Somalia and the Congo Republic.
Roughly half of the population is housed in low-cost housing with the balance in self erected shacks of board and corrugated iron.
Three-quarters of the residents have a household income of less than $300 per month, and there is an estimated 50% unemployment.
Unemployment foments crime and the culture of anti-social gangs. Teenage pregnancies, truancy and a general air of malaise and despondency lead to apathy and petty crime and even murder and more serious crime.
Historically many individuals and organisations have led programmes to assist in the social area with little effect because of the prevailing atmosphere of hopelessness and helplessness.
Would you like to help rejuvenate and restore this tragic community?
I am sure you would like to see a smile on these sad little faces.
What is needed, we believe, is a complete rejuvenation of family values and morals.Early Childhood Development is essential in accomplishing this, which is why we have targeted pre schools and crèches in order to assist.
A legacy of Apartheid’s forced removal policy has all but destroyed the fabric of family life in the townships. Many of the households are single parent families and most affected are the children and youth.
Vuyolwethu, is a non-profit organisation based in Vrygrond, formed in an endeavour to address these problems.
Our Vision is to see a reversal of the status quo and the re-establishment of family values within the community.
- By providing a place where children can be cared for in an environment of safety and security through Pre-school Educare centres.
- To provide a place where the youth can be accommodated through sports, social activities and counselling.
- To provide training facilities for various trades.(Panel Beating, Motor Mechanics, Welding, Construction work, Carpentry, Baking and cooking,) in order to foster and teach entrepreneurship and combat unemployment.
- To provide a small clinic to take care of minor ailments.
- To provide a “Home from Home” for abused women and children as well as the rehabilitation of street people and released prisoners.
- To provide a place for the elderly to receive attention through health exercises and general activities.
- To provide a marketing platform for the sale of local arts and crafts to provide income for crafters and sustainability of the project.
Our monthly operating costs for one Educare are R10000 (US$ 1000) per month (and we are assisting 8 of them) and we need to raise this on a regular basis.
The Christian ethos is strictly adhered to and the day starts for the children with prayers, songs and a Bible story and grace is said before each meal. The ages of the children range between 6 months to 9 years and there is an after school program for children who are already at formal schools.
The parents of the children cared for do pay a minimal fee of R200 (US$ 20) when they can but this does not even cover the expenses of food for the children who get three meals a day. Salaries for three teachers and a cleaner, transport and electricity are additional essential monthly expenses.
Currently our regular contributors account for R 1750 (US$ 175) so our needs are great.
At present we are negotiating for the lease of the premises at 1 Vrygrond drive where Butterfly Way Educare is situated and where there are facilities for sports activities as well as rooms for the clinic, training facilities, and a recreation area for counselling of elderly and abused women. The house on the property could be converted into a home for abused women and children.
Renovations and conversion of the present buildings would cost in the region of R250000 (US$ 25000)
At the moment Butterfly Way Educare has 51 children and the other Educares have between 12 and fifty children. Therefore Vuyolwethu is assisting in the care of about 250 children in total in Vrygrond, Kyalitsha and Delft.
Please take a careful look at the happy children in the pictures enclosed. This is just the beginning and it is exciting to imagine the results when the whole project is in operation.
We guarantee you transparency, honesty and integrity and will supply financial statements and reports on a regular basis.
We would be most grateful for your assistance and would be pleased to answer any queries you may have.
God bless you,
Chairman of Vuyolwethu Fund raising committee.
On behalf of the committee.
Tel : +27 21 788 9554
Mobile +27 82 2266 370
E Mail email@example.com
Branch Code 25609
Savings Account No,073477532
Account Name VUYOLWETHU
SWIFT CODE SBZAZAJJ