Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa

by Keep The Dream196
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Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Lifeskills for 2,587 Children in South Africa
Mhloti - Community Facilitator for SHG
Mhloti - Community Facilitator for SHG

Avuxeni, minjani, umfekile minje! (Hello, how are you? I am well!)

Thank you for your support of KTD196, the children, and the parents. We are able to do so much more because of your support. For example, the Self-Help Group Approach program is a direct response to one of the pressing issues in this province, poverty. So many difficulties are experienced due to poverty. As I have shared before stunting due to lack of quality food, crime, and violence due to poverty, ladies are trapped in a cycle of violence because there is no effective means of support if they leave their partners.

At KTD196 we want to empower women to make the changes necessary in their own lives, to give them a hand up, and to show them a new way to deal with old issues. It is so exciting to have Dikeledi and Mhloti join the KTD196 team and to realize our dream of making substantial changes in the lives of impoverished families we work with.

The program is reaching a tipping point now as reluctant community leaders and members are reaching out to us to establish SHGA in their villages. In the beginning, it was very tough for these ladies because gossip and jealousy nearly stopped the process before it started. Now families are advertising for us the impact they are experiencing. Where the two Community Facilitators were being chased away from certain villages they are now being begged to return.

The money lenders are not happy, which means the two Community Facilitators may be put at further risk but they are so passionate to continue and see their families, friends, neighbors and new friends from the different groups begin to thrive.

They are now entering a period with the groups from last year where the 5 groups of 20 ladies (100 families represented) will start developing small business ideas with a cash flow readily available through SHG. We are changing the face of communities one family at a time.

I hope you enjoy reading Mhloti's (pronounced Mshloti) story.

Thank you for being a part of real change, real impact, and community development at its best.

You are such a blessing

Louise

 

 

My name is Mhloti I am from Shiluvane village. I Joined Keep The Dream196 in June 2021 for the program called Self-Help Group Approach (SHGA). 

At first starting to work and be involved with the program, it was not easy because I knew nothing. However, going to training really helped me to understand, working in this program help me as a woman as well because I am able to bring change in my community. 

Sometimes we face challenges especially in the beginning, with the community leaders (Indunas). Others were very understanding and happy about the development we are bringing and understood very well, and let us explain what we are offering and how it will be helpful to them. 

We all know that when there is money people always think about frauds. Nevertheless, luckily, due to the trainings that we had, we were able to explain to them and they understood, and they welcomed us in their homes, and gave us their support to run these programs. 

 I am very happy with what I am in doing and working for the betterment of assisting women to grow and be financially responsible, care and support their families. 

Now they know us as the (SHGA) Ladies and we are very happy with the success of the first formation of these groups and the trainings that were offered to all the groups. Now they all know the concept, run all the trainings, and encourage working together in order to have teamwork so that their groups can function very well and I am very happy with the progress that they have made so far. 

Thank you. KTD196 for the opportunity to make us part of bringing change in the communities that we live in through this program and now we are able to support our families and many more others. 

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Dikeledi - SHGA Community Facilitator
Dikeledi - SHGA Community Facilitator

One of the many reasons I love my job is because of the people I meet! The work we do has such a profound impact on those who are a part of the program, adults, and children! I love making a difference, I love living a life that has impact, that brings about positive change! I am sure that is why you support KTD196, you want to see change, and you want to see the impact!

I want to introduce you to Dikeledi, I first met this lady in 2013, she came to us through a drop-in center partner. A drop-in center is a place where kids go ostensibly after school for extra lessons, feeding, life skills training, and a variety of other different activities. The sad reality is, that drop-in centers are a basic employment service for adults. One of the reasons why we started working with the centers was because

1. They were supposed to offer life skills and didn't know how!

2. They were supposed to offer extra lessons and didn't know how!

3. They would feed the children, most of the time with very poor quality food, the rest of the food would be taken by the staff for their families.

We would go to the centers and offer to train their staff in implementing the program and then we would monitor and evaluate their performance. This increased our foothold in the communities, allowed us to bring in our values (honesty and integrity), and gave the organization notice they were being watched especially regarding the food situation, but they were rewarded with a program that would insure future funding, plus our program aligned with the school curriculum so extra lessons were being provided.

One of these organizations employed Dikeledi and from the word GO, she was passionate, committed, and fully involved. She drove the program in her village. Over time, I watched this very shy and withdrawn lady become more confident, she would hardly speak a word to adults but around children, she became alive and so animated.

Fast forward to 2019, the drop-in center closed due to delays in funding and continued poor management. Our program would have stopped if it had not been due to Dikeledi transitioning the group to her home. The other staff at the drop-in center were very jealous of her, thinking we paid her to continue, they just didn't understand the concept of "volunteering". They gave her a very difficult time.

Now in June 2021, KTD196 decided to give her a chance with the Self Help Group Approach. Sadly, the people in her own village were so jealous and bitter that they influenced the Induna (village chief) to refuse the SHGA to be started in her own village and gossip abound labeling Dikeledi as a fraudster.

Now in May 2022, the Induna has heard about SHGA and how effective it is with the poorest of the poor that she has been invited to start a group in her own village. Those people who tried to shut her down and be extremely vicious and nasty are now requesting to be a  part of the group. To Dikeledi's credit, she is open to them joining the SHGA, and her humility and heart attitude is being vindicated. Sadly, this is the sort of rubbish that we face repeatedly despite having a very good reputation in the villages we work in and with the Inudunas we work with. Gossip and Jealously are able to kill in this area. People think gossip is truth, very much like the fake news which is out there however here, people can and do kill over lies.

Anyway, that is my story about Dikeledi, her story is below.

Thank you for being such a large part of the work we do, you are so appreciated.

Nkomo swenene ngopfu (Thank you so much!)

Blessings

Louise

 

My Story - Dikeledi
 

My name is Dikeledi I am from Pharare village. I joined Keep The Dream196 in June 2021 for the Self-Help Group Approach program (SHGA) 

Before joining the program, I was clueless about what we are going to do, but after the trainings, I understood what we are going to be working with. Moreover, we started the program by transit walks around our communities and our neighbouring villages, while making sure they understand what we are all about, which is financial stability for women’s who are not working or earning less than minimum wage on a daily basis. 

It was not easy in the beginning in some places they welcome us warmly and loved our programs, others thought we fraudsters. Moreover, they had trust issues because of what is happening in our country regarding where these money issues involved. 

After we carefully explained about our SHGA programs, we gained trust, we were able to implement the number of groups that we needed to start running our programs and training them, I am very happy, and we have made a wonderful achievement. In addition, they are working together for the better and they know the importance of these programs. 

Myself I was a very shy person but these programs gave me the confidence to talk and face my fears. I can now speak in front of many people. Moreover, my family is very happy because I am earning every month, and I can take care of my family needs. 

 Thank you very much KTD196 for the opportunity, before these programs I used to be on scouts programs in 2013, and the trainings that they gave us really helped us to bring change in our children’s education in schools,  we are forever grateful. 

Thank you for your support

Dikeledi

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The Face of Hope!
The Face of Hope!

I am so excited! It is wonderful to see the way in which the Self Help Groups (SHGs) are growing and being established. It is through the support of our donor but also through your support! Not all of our costs are covered by the donor, but because of your support, we are able to cover the outstanding costs.

Last year I reported how this was a pilot project, we passed the pilot phase and are now in the first year of a 5yr program. Our target this year is 25 new groups on top of the 5groups from last year. The groups are only ladies from the poorest of the poor in our communities. Predominantly they are foreign nationals who came to this country as refugees to escape the war in Mozambique from 1977 to 1992 over 40yrs ago.

They came illegally, were undocumented, and have remained so due to South Africa's laws, we now have multiple generations of people who identify as South African, not as Mozambiqueans, who have adopted Xitsonga and Sepedi culture and who have left their own culture. They are unable to access basic human rights such as Identity Documents and therefore struggle to get equitable work, health care, and education. They are sentenced to generational poverty for themselves and their children and their children's children.

They live under constant fear of deportation back to a land they do not know, to a culture and language they are unfamiliar with! It is very difficult to attain documentation in this country legally due to poor service delivery and corruption. As a foreigner myself it actually took a High Court case to compel the Department of Home Affairs to give me my work permit after 4years of being considered a "Legal Illegal" due to their inability to interpret the law, not just my case but a class action case of over 400 respondents.

Being a "Legal Illegal" meant I could not work (fortunately because I worked for an NGO - there was a special provision for me but not for the 400 others trapped in no man's land for 4yrs); I could not renew my license or vehicle registration; I could not enter into any formal contract such as cell phone renewal; I was unable to travel outside of the country or risk being banned for 5yrs! It cost in effect R20,000 to be part of the class-action case.

To go through the legal process is horrendous.

So the decision was made to work with ladies, who are the poorest of the poor, to ensure their economic survival; to reduce food insecurity and malnutrition, to bring the hope of accessing the correct documentation through partnerships with other NGOs who specialize in the documentation of foreign nationals and to break the cycle of poverty they have been existing in for over 40yrs.

That is what you are supporting. You are bringing hope, not just to these ladies but to their children. Through this program, you are enabling the children to sit matriculation and go on to university which currently they cannot do because the children do not have Identity Documents which is a pre-requisite to sit the exams.

I hope you are encouraged and as passionate as I am with the work we are achieving on behalf of others. By the end of this year, 600 ladies and 600 families will be a part of the program, your support will assist over 2,500 children to realize their dreams! Eventually, later this year, the ladies will have their own small businesses and become entrepreneurs perhaps even employing others.

Thank you so much for being a part of their story, being a part of their success.

Currently, GlobalGiving is offering to give a 100% bonus to everyone who takes out a new monthly donation scheme of their first donation up to $200. That means after 3months of continuous giving, your first donation will be donated by GlobalGiving to us as a bonus. Just one more way to increase your gift.

Please consider creating a continuous gift-giving donation!

Below are just some comments from some of the ladies together we are helping.

Blessings

Louise

“We no longer sleep on empty stomach the group has assisted me a lot.”

“This group has assisted me as my kids now are able to eat bread as others.”

“This group is helpful in my life my kids are now looking the same as other kids at school, they have shoes coming from this group and they have pocket money daily.”

“I was the poorest of the poor I’m now getting full with my kids as we were sometimes sleeping on empty stomach I was even known in the village but now things have changed. Others are still wondering what is happening with my life why I am no longer go to ask for help.”

“It brought change in my life I was struggling with community funeral contributions but since I have joined the group I have never skipped even one funeral.”

“My son is on wheelchair and sometimes he was unable to go for check-ups because of financial problems but since I joined the group whenever I know that he will be going to check-up I come to the group and borrow money, so to me this group means a lot.”

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Nomasi at Keep The Dream196
Nomasi at Keep The Dream196

Thank you so much for your support each and every day. We are only as productive as the people who are involved with Keep The Dream196, and that includes you! I hope you realize how much you contribute each and every day to the children of KTD196 and the lives you are saving, from addiction to pregnancy, from violence and jail to unemployment and hopelessness. YOU are making such a huge difference in the lives of our children. I am truly grateful.

What we do is change the trajectory of so many lives, not just children.

As I have shared in the past, we work with women through our self-help groups, and currently, we have in excess of 300 women involved in that project. I will share more about this next week. We also train and equip the parents we work with, who are predominantly mothers, as well as Scouters who again are predominantly women in the villages. Finally, we train our staff who once again are majorly women.

Because of your support, we have been able to bring 2 more people on to full-time, Nomasi is one and Rosemary is the other, I have shared Rosemary's story before but you can find both these stories on our new website. I see that some people from America, South Africa, Australia, and Poland so far have taken up the offer to check it out early. Please if you have any suggestions for improving the site I would be very happy to take them on board.

Below Nomasi shares her story of coming to KTD196, Nomasi has been so engaged with the children's program that she has started Cubs and Scouts based at her home, she is not yet trained to do this but she has such a heart and passion for the children that she wanted to help

Thank you so much for your support

Blessings

Louise

Ps those who haven't yet gone to our website for a sneak peek please do so, you can leave a message there if you want something added or changed. We are working together and I need to hear your voice.

 

My name is Nomasi I am from Nkowankowa Township. Before joining KTD 196, I was working at Wimpy Restaurant as a waiter/cashier for 13 years. One day, while I was working, came in a woman who for the first time listened to my story, understood where I came from in my life, and did not judge me to a point where one day she offered me a job to work as Admin assistant at her office.

Never in a million years did I think of giving myself a chance to further my education, being given a chance to work and learn, grow and develop many skills.

Being in an organization like Keep The Dream196 where opportunities are available to everyone, you can succeed in life and make a difference. Working for KTD196 and learning the Children’s program has helped me as a mother to understand my children and help them regardless of the challenges they will face in life with a positive attitude no matter the circumstances.

This is a life-changing opportunity to focus on my life again, and help other people around me especially young children because they are tomorrow’s future, no matter their background.

I am happy to be part of a local NGO that runs different programs in supporting children and encourages parents to support their children’s education and empower communities to sustain themselves by providing for their families. Thank you very much because I am now a very confident person and a better parent, I get to spend time with my kids and be involved in daily life activities.

I wish to be a good example that it is never too late to start over again in life. KTD196, may your work continue to bring blessings to many people's lives.

I never thought that one day I would challenge myself; I have always wanted to make a difference and be someone in life. It is never easy to make a life-changing decision but am happy I did because it was the best one ever. I have worked in a restaurant because I have to provide for my family now am achieving my dream.

I know KTD196 helps the children but you have also helped me to grow and realize my dream

Thank you Keep The Dream 196 NGO.

 

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Future Leaders in our program, thanks to you!
Future Leaders in our program, thanks to you!

I often am amazed at how impactful our program is! Don't get me wrong, the program Elizabeth and I designed is evidence-based and thoroughly planned, it just gobsmacks me that the kids are so passionate about the program and are making it sustainable for the future.

Often NGO's (Non-Governmental Organizations) are asked by Institutional Donors for their exit strategies from the work we are doing. Honestly, I don't see how we are going to exit as there are so many children that need this program.

The exit I envisage is the children as adults take over Keep The Dream196 and take it further.

The exit I see, are the groups through the adult Self Help Groups (SHGs) becoming self-sustaining and no longer requiring support from KTD196 financially. They are able to pay to take the kids to camp, to pay for activities, badges, and registration fees which KTD196 has been supporting.

The exit I see is that through the Self Help Groups they will bring financial stability to their families and to create employment through micro-enterprises which in turn raises the wealth of the family and they, in turn, raise the wealth of the community.

The exit I see is that the children themselves will progress through life very well and give back by taking up volunteer roles within the program that will enable KTD196 to focus on new areas and start building the children in new communities.

We have a long-term plan to change South Africa, one child at a time, with your help. We are seeing major differences as I have cited previously however, we have many new donors who may not know our plans.

OUR VISION: To see all children enter adulthood with holistic skills and abilities necessary to contribute effectively to the development of South Africa

OUR ORGANISATION'S MISSION:

“Our mission is to assist children to overcome difficult life circumstances by building resilience physically, emotionally, spiritually, and psychologically, using a Right’s-based framework, so they are able to realize their full potential and contribute to the building of South Africa.”

As you can see, we have vision, and a way forward that after nearly 20yrs is achieving that goal. This is what you have contributed towards. This is what you have given to. This is where we are ultimately going. Through YOUR support, we are continuing to have an impact and literally bringing children and families back from the precipice. Covid, as with most places, caused chaos, as the world is steadily recovering, those who are extremely marginal prior to covid need continued assistance to get back up again.

There is so much these children have to overcome: all forms of abuse; poverty, bullying, loss of parents through HIV/AIDs, covid, usual lifestyle diseases, crime, neglect by parents, poor education system to name a few challenges. I am proud of the work we do, there is still so much to be done but rest assured together we are making a huge difference.

You have been amazing, thank you so much for your gifts and I hope this puts in perspective the work we are doing together.

Blessings to you and your families from the Dream Team and 16,000 odd children we have supported since 2003.

Louise

ps if you would like a sneak preview of our new website, please go to https://www.keepthedream196.com/web

The future we are securing in the present!
The future we are securing in the present!

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Organization Information

Keep The Dream196

Location: Modjadjiskloof, Limpopo - South Africa
Website:
Project Leader:
Louise Batty
Tzaneen, Limpopo South Africa
$286,052 raised of $370,000 goal
 
3,437 donations
$83,948 to go
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