May 25

Thank you for all the support

Thank you so much for all you are doing for the children and their mothers in Limpopo! Your donations are bringing new hope to whole families.

Last Thursday I visited 3 Self Help Groups (SHG), I wanted to meet the ladies, to see how they took ownership of their SHG, and to hear about the impact for myself. I was amazed. For the first time in many of their lives, they said they had hope for the future. The money is steadily growing within their groups and the ladies are now starting to think about small businesses they can create to generate an ongoing income.

It is really so humbling, when I first arrived the ladies started singing and ululating to celebrate my arrival. They had been informed a malungu (white) woman was the person who brought SHG to their village and they were so happy to finally meet me. I wish you had been there, I really do. I went to 3 groups on that day and the reception was similar.

The ladies from the first group were all Mozambican refugees. Refugees are the most impoverished people group in this society. This group was one of the original 5 groups that were started last year. They have now become largely independent of KTD196 which is wonderful. The ladies are starting small businesses in order to become financially free.

One lady Julia is seen in the photo with a half-built chicken coop in the background. This coop is actually in a better condition than her mud house which houses her daughters and her grandchildren. Once the coop is complete the chickens which she currently has are in a very small 2x2metre enclosure and will be able to live, reproduce and give eggs for sale. By the end of May she should have finished the work and her business will start in a formal way.

The ladies all have such a sense of excitement at being able to meet their own financial needs. Their children have shoes for school especially since it is now winter. Just an aside, we are researching a Children’s Rights Situational Analysis (CRSA). We have started with doing group interviews regarding the children’s enjoyment of their rights. One issue that was repeated in different villages was the way in which teachers would mistreat refugee children in general, and refugee children without shoes in particular teachers would deliberately step on their toes to hurt them.

We may not be able to change the attitudes of teachers easily, although we are trying, we are at least through SHG preventing that particular insult. It is incredibly sad to see refugee children being disenfranchised and further marginalized because of inequalities and lack of care and compassion. I just want to add not all teachers do this, however, a majority are vindictive which is incredibly sad. As we develop our proposal following the CRSA we plan on addressing many Rights violations and bringing about real change and the positive enjoyment of the children’s rights in particular.

Anyway, thank you for reading this report, and thank you for your ongoing support of the work that we are doing. We can only do this with your support, there is no other way for us to bring effective positive change which lasts. Together we are bringing hope, a sense of destiny, and empowerment.

You are wonderful