Disadvantaged & Special Needs children, Cape Town

Nov 13, 2013

Fundraising Challenge 2013


Dear Supporter,

This past weekend was a busy one for many of us here in Gordon’s Bay, South Africa as a group of 17 of us undertook an 80km trek from Cape Point to Table Mountain.  This is the second year in a row we have done the hike in order to raise funds for this projects!
For that first day our goal was to hike from Cape Point to Simon’s Town where we would stay overnight.  We walked through the national park and along roads the whole way to reach Simon’s Town in about six hours. On our second day, we had about nine hours of hiking to do as we went up and down two mountains to end at Constantia Nek. 
By the time the last day came around every member of the team was feeling strained from the challenges we had overcome already. On this day we had plans of hiking all the way to the top of Table Mountain, however nature had a different plan for us. We discovered that the weather was too windy and the cable cars would not be running to take us down from the top.  Together with the help of everyone, we would take a different trail known as the contour path that would lead us up and around the mountain and down to the cable car station. It was another beautiful hike overlooking all of Cape Town that took us about seven hours from start to finish. But the most amazing part of the whole hike was definitely at the finish line.

As we headed down a steep last stretch everyone was excited to know they had almost made it. The feeling was overwhelming as we came down off the mountain to be greeted by our drivers, guides, and especially our project partner Mama Lumka and some of her family who had come out as a surprise to show their support. I personally did not believe my ears as I heard their voices cheering me on for the last stretch. It was such an awesome feeling that bested any other during the hike to know that not only had we completed our challenge, but that our project partners were there to show how much it meant to them. And looking around you could tell that everyone felt the same as we all had huge grins on our faces. The challenge was officially finished and the only thing left to do was celebrate.
Thank you to everyone who supports GVI CT Cape Town, Mama Lumka, the children and this challenge.

Andy Eskeland

Ikhayalethemba Coordinator


Aug 20, 2013

GVI Celebrates Four Years in Nomzamo


Dear supporter,
On Friday 9th August it was fun for all as we celebrated four years of GVI working in Nomzamo. Our celebrations were at Ikhayalethemba Orphanage and Mama Lumka, our first Project  Partner here in Nomzamo, welcomed our celebrations at her orphanage with great enthusiasm. There is no doubt she values the support we have given in the township since our partnership began back in August 2009.
Our current volunteers made a display of photos showing the past four years and these were displayed on the day.  It certainly highlighted how much can happen in four years. The posters are now proudly displayed in Mama’s office.


We had a drumming group to entertain the children, carers and volunteers. We all had the opportunity to drum along as well as dance. For those of you who know Lea (one of our special needs children)……well you can imagine how keen she was to join in with the drumming and became an honorary member of the group for a while.  Her skills never cease to amaze. The drummers created a great atmosphere for the celebrations.

Once the drumming ceased it was time for speeches and JT our Programs Manager thanked Mama, her family and staff  as well as all volunteers past and present for all their work in Nomzamo and Zola. She also acknowledged all the dedicated GVI staff who had made contributions to the projects over the time. Mama also thanked everyone from GVI and hopes that we will continue to have volunteers to help in her community in years to come. 
JT was then joined by one of the local children to cut the celebratory cake which was shared by all who were present at the celebration.
It was a great day, and to all staff, supporters, donors and volunteers who have made a contribution over the past four years, we thank you.
Cheryl Martin
Project Manager


Jun 3, 2013

Ships Ahoy! Pirate Day


Each Friday at Ikhayalethemba we host a “Fun Friday” activity for the children.  This includes all sorts of activities ranging from baking to kite making to most recently, a pirate themed day. The look on the children’s faces was priceless as they walked into the classroom to see balloons, our own Ikhayalethemba jolly roger, and even a parrot.  To add to the children’s excitement, each swashbuckling buccaneer was given an eye patch, a bandana, and a cardboard cut out of a hook or sword, even a mini sword for our smallest child.

We followed all this up with our usual story time, but with a pirate-y twist.  We read a couple of the children’s favourite stories about pirates, and got all the kids to join in reciting them back.  When the stories were done we played a game of pass the treasure, a pirate version of pass the parcel.  All the kids were anxious to see what the treasure would be and who would get it.  For the rest of the day we played games with our balloon decorations and built a fort, or perhaps it was a pirate ship, out of blankets and chairs.

It was an incredibly fun Friday for everyone involved.


Mar 7, 2013

Playhouse at Ikhayalethemba

Creative play is an important part of our programme at Ikhayalethemba Village. The great thing about creative play is that children develop their social skills; interacting, talking and sharing. This play is also so essential to the development of children's physical skills, language and problem solving. One of our key goals at Ikhayalethemba is for the children to develop strong English skills and through Creative play children have many opportunities to develop their English language.

When we had some financial donations for Ikhayalethemba just prior to Christmas, we decided to put it toward a playhouse for the children. A playhouse provides an opportunity for children to role play and to interact with each other in a positive way. It is a wonderful opportunity for children to engage in Creative play. We decided that the playhouse would be a Christmas present from Father Christmas.

There was great excitement at Ikhayalethemba when Father Christmas' present arrived early. The children looked on with anticipation as a van drove up and in the back were large wooden shapes. They sat as a group to watch their gift unfold. It wasn't long before the children could recognise that the shapes were going to make a playhouse. As the workers put the playhouse together the children sat attentively. Once they realised what it was going to be, they started planning what they could put in it. The carers were joking that they would put their own beds in there to sleep, much to the amusement of the children. Once the house was erected, the workers stained it and so the children had to wait to explore for an hour and a half whilst it dried. They did this well and managed to line up an array of things that they thought would be suitable to use inside the house. Already the children's creativity was kicking in!

Since that first day the children have loved their playhouse. They have developed all sorts of role play situations and it's lovely to see them play so cooperatively. It made a great stable for our Christmas Nativity and many of our class lessons have been done inside the playhouse.


Dec 31, 2012

Mama Lumka - The Wheelbarrow Saint

Mama Lumka
Mama Lumka

Mama Lumka is affectionately known as “The Wheelbarrow Lady” or “The Wheelbarrow Saint”. She gained this title from the days when she used to walk through the township collecting children who had been abused and neglected, taking them to her own home to provide care.  Some of the children she found were in dark rooms with a bucket for a toilet and food left for them on the floor.

Mama’s passion is for the children with disabilities.  Her own son Jackson had severe disabilities and had lived a short life.  This particularly inspired Mama to take in children with Special Needs.

By 2001 Mama Lumka was providing care for 16 children in her own home in Nomzamo, a township near Cape Town.   In 2002 a group of business people acknowledged the wonderful work that Mama was doing and decided to support her. This is when the Nceduluntu Sanctuary Trust was established. In September 2004 the first 2 homes on the Sanctuary site were established.  It was named Ikhayalethemba Village.  Ikhayalethemba means Home of Hope. Since then Mama has been providing care for orphaned and vulnerable children at Ikhayalethemba Village, many of them with Physical and Intellectual disabilities.

Global Vision International (GVI) formed a partnership with Mama in August 2009.  Since then volunteers from all over the world have been working at Ikhayalethemba Village.   GVI volunteers provide educational programs for the children and have also worked with the children with Special Needs to provide therapy programs. Through the Christmas appeal with GlobalGivingUK, we would love to take the children on outings and access services such Riding for the Disabled or Swimming therapy. This would be a great experience for the children. Your donation can make this a reality.

Devotion to her children
Devotion to her children


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Project Leader

Sophie Birkett

GVI Charitable Trust Manager
Exeter, Devon United Kingdom

Where is this project located?

Map of Disadvantaged & Special Needs children, Cape Town