I want to thank you for all your care and support of the Children of Limpopo but particularly of Greater Tzaneen. You make what we do successful because of your financial support. It is scary to think of where we would be without you! To be quite honest, you have kept our hearts beating.
In fact, I know that you have helped us survive as an organization through very tumultuous times such as Covid and the many Community crises’ we have faced such as political riots, burning down of community infrastructure, travel disruptions caused by rioting and demonstrations, seasons when we weren’t able to go to the communities because it was too dangerous. You have done that.
Through your support we have also grown and added more staff for the projects we have implemented. We have been able to address core structural issues such as poverty by using Asset Based Community Development Approach. Together we are changing the face of families and communities as well as individuals and I am very proud of the work we doing and the impact we are achieving together.
In the future, this year, we will be addressing Rights Violations particularly that of the lack of Child Participation within families, schools and communities. We have formulated our Implementation Plan, and are currently honing our Monitoring and Evaluation Plan so that we make sure what we are planning will be effective and produce the outcomes and impact we are seeking.
On a personal note I just want to share that I will not be working for a minimum of 6weeks from 15th May 2023. I hope you will bear with me during this time. I am creating 6weeks worth of reports to send out each week to keep you up to date. I will need to resend out previous reports with a tweak and update others for scheduled distribution until I am back on deck fully again. There are a lot of new people each month who have not read previous reports and sometimes it is great to read updates from the kids themselves as to where they are now.
I hope you will continue to read the reports and comment as you do on anything interesting or what you would like to read more about.
Thank you once again
My name is Tsundzukani, I live in a village called Myakayaka, I joined KTD196 scouting in 2010 when I was 5 years old I was doing grade R, they called us cubs.
But I stopped going to scouts for about 3 years, I didn't leave scouts but I was taking a break and in 2014 I was 9 years old I went back to scouting movement because I was matured and I knew what I wanted in life.
Before joining scouts, I was rude and mean, especially to girls, but I was respectful to adults, I used to bully my cousins and my classmates at school, but now I am thankful for everything that my teachers at scouts did to help me to change the way I was behaving. Now I protect girls from bullying, now I make sure the girls in my patrol feel safe.
An interesting thing about scouts is that, what we learn in scouts is what we sometimes learn at school, so I didn't struggle at school, I never failed a grade at school because of scouts and also I enjoy camping and hiking.
Scouts helped me how to be independent in life because in Scouts we do things individually you can ask someone who is more advanced than you but he/she cannot do that work for you so Scouts taught me that. With scouting I learnt how to be a leader I have gained leadership skills.
So now I am glad that I meet Keep The Dream 196, it made a huge difference in my life I also thank for the support of the parents that supported us throughout this journey because it takes a village to raise a child.
To parents who are denying their children to go to scouts, I am saying this to you now, please allow them to come to scouts because your children will learn how to be leaders of our country in the future, start now.
I have just finished my Springbok award. I decided to build a community garden in my village which is very poor, I used to go to sleep with my stomach growling because we never had enough food. Since joining scouts and doing food gardens, we were never hungry. I wanted other children to have full stomachs as well. So my patrol and me, we built a community garden so everyone could eat if they were hungry.
I would commit everything that I do I will do it with truth and help people every day. I am the first Springbok in my troop to succeed and I am happy I will be able to help other children to succeed as I have. I will work hard to motivate the upcoming Springboks to succeed as well. I am planning on going to University next year, I will work hard and succeed there as well.
I would like to thank you for the support of Keep The Dream 196 and the support that they have shown throughout my scouting journey.
Avuxeni, Minjani? Umfekile Minjane! (Greetings, how are you? I am well!)
Last week I spoke about Synergy, and I wanted to follow up with an example of the synergy I was speaking about.
Since the pandemic (Covid-19) the scout group we had in Pharare had to close down, the reason was the scouter lost her job and decided to relocate to Johannesburg. Currently, in Pharare we have two SHGs groups called Khutso and Witness.
During one of the weekly discussions the women spoke about how they would like KTD196 to open a scout group for their children. Through your support, we were able to realise this request and now we currently we have 24 scouts (11-18 years) and 14 cubs (7-11 years old) based in Pharare.
The women in the group are supporting the Field Officer who is in charge of the group and already there is potential of a second scout group to open soon.
All though we have women who are willing to support the Field Officer, your support provides the necessary staff, transport and resources to open a group and establish the group with the necessary equipment and training. The SHG’s are growing and raising capital but that is for businesses which in the end will support the Children’s Groups eventually but the start-up capital is what you supply.
You are helping to keep 24 youth and 14 younger children away from activities based on peer pressure such as gangsterism, vandalism, experimenting with sex or criminal activities. YOU are assisting these children to find their way and to realise their dreams. YOUR support is bringing hope, not just to the children but also their parents and families in general. We are changing communities.
My name is Derryck and I was a volunteer from England that came to spend 4months with KTD196 under Tear Fund, an International Sponsoring Organization which focussed on volunteer exchange visits. During my time in Limpopo I got the chance to learn and work alongside Keep The Dream196 who are based within the Limpopo area and work with vulnerable children and orphans through the cubs and scouts movement. I staye with Catherine and her Family, Catherine was a Field Officer and worked into the Burgersdorp area.
KTD196 are changing children’s lives through different programs that are using to empower the children mentally, physically and spiritually. The villages where KTD196 works and where I lived for my time at KTD196 does not have any community leisure facilities, children can become idle and disorderly and can get involved in various unruly activities which can lead to issues such as teen pregnancy and drug/alcohol abuse, criminal activities etc. I know this first hand because I come from Uganda, I grew up in a rural area very much like Limpopo.
Sadly, we did not have a KTD196 in Uganda. As children, because of boredom, we got up to all sorts of poor behaviour. But with KTD196 in Limpopo, with their cubs and scout’s programs help keep the kids from going astray but not only do they empower the kids, KTD196 also involves the parents in every way possible in order to avoid challenging conflicts within the household.
Personally, I was most touched by the leader’s recognition event, where the adult volunteers and children were introduced to the importance of gratitude but also to give them a chance to showcase what they have learnt throughout the year and become creative in their own way. They all eagerly participated in the event and were grateful. The look on their faces really touched my heart.
Please be assured that every donation made to KTD196 is changing a child's life. I have seen it first hand, KTD196 does an excellent job, if you can visit and see for yourself that would be very good, I know Louise and her team would make you feel very welcome.
Avuxeni, Minjani? Umfekile Minjane! (Greetings, I hope you are well? I am fine!)
Today I want to share briefly one child's experience.
Did you know 24% of South African's particularly those aged between 15-24yrs of age and femail carry the burden of being infected by HIV. Joy is just one of 100,000's who have been born with this life limiting disease. Sadly, discrimination and fear of being "Found Out" is still real and the repercussions can be devastating for those with HIV.
Joy had the courage to share her status, she had the courage to share with me and with Nkulu our Social Worker. It has been wonderful to watch this scared, shy child, who was under nourished and living in fear blossom as a young child should, her future is so exciting now, because of you!
This is just one child of 100's that we serve. Thank you so much for your gift.
PS for privacy sake I will not display a photo of Joy for obvious reasons but if you would like to leave a message of encouragement for her on our website I will make sure she receives it.
My name is Joy, I am 14years old and have been in KTD196 as a scout since Feb 2021.
I want to share my story, but I asked Louise to write it for me because it is hard for me.
My mum and dad died of Aids 4years ago. I was born with HIV. I was scared that people would reject me because of being HIV positive. I didn’t tell KTD196 or anyone except my sister who goes with me to the clinic to get treatment.
I live with my older sister. We survive on the Child Support Grant R480 ($27USD) for the month.
One day Nkulu (social worker for KTD196) saw that I was not feeling well, she organized for Louise (a nurse from KTD196) to visit me. She asked me all sorts of questions and I was too afraid to tell her that I was HIV positive. I didn’t tell her the medication I was on, but later that day I sent a message to her. She realised I was positive. Instead of rejecting me like I thought she would, the next day, she came all the way to my village, and hugged me. I was so scared she would stop me from coming to Scouts. I started crying with relief.
After a big discussion about my health, Louise and Nkulu realised that I was not eating enough and the medication I was on was making me unwell. From then, KTD196 has encouraged my sister to participate in the Self Help Groups (SHG) to increase our income and start a small business. KTD196 also have been bringing us food parcels to help with eating properly.
This week I went to camp. Since receiving the food parcels, I have grown about 4inches in 6months. I have put on some weight, no one will know that I am sick now. I loved going camping and your donations sponsored me to camp and also provides the food parcels each month until my sister and I can start a small business. I am also doing better in school, I can concentrate. I do not feel sick or scared any more. I am HAPPY!
Thank you for helping me and my sister. I promise I will be a good girl and do my homework and study hard. You have made such a difference to my life. I cannot thank you enough. I think KTD196 saved my life. I think you saved my life.
What an exciting time it is to see how our Children’s Groups are growing and also how our Self Help Groups are growing. We are now entering a time of synergy, where we are introducing the Children’s Program to the SHG’s and requesting their children join the Children’s Program. We are also asking for volunteers from among the parents so that the program will not be dependent on KTD196. The parents are loving our Children’s Program.
We are also establishing SHG’s where we only have the Children’s Program, this way parents will be able to assist with the children’s groups, and volunteer as well. It is exciting stuff.
Last week I spoke about KTD196 recently hosting the Southern African regional manager for SHG development, but what I didn’t share was that the relationships we now have with the Traditional Leaders, due to the Children’s Program and the SHG Project, are flourishing and we are being given priority over other NGO’s working in the area.
KTD196 is being included in the Traditional Leaders monthly meetings to give report backs about our activities, successes and challenges, and the leaders are so keen to have us in their villages, they are now actively assisting us, which is a huge change. No longer are we recipients of benign indifference (because Children are not really culturally “important” and neither is an organization which works with them), rather we are actively being sort out for advice and guidance in matters related to children. Induna’s (Village Leaders) are wanting us in every village, which is stretching but exciting.
If you get a chance check out the Map I posted for Greater Tzaneen and you can see how many villages are potential targets for the program but also the expanse we currently cover is circled in blue. The pink circle is where the current SHG program is focussed. Sadly, the map is not great quality but you get the idea. Officially there are 125 villages in Greater Tzaneen but that does not include some of the informal settlements where we work.
There is still a lot of work to be done. Obviously budgeting for this increase demand was unexpected. The success and synergy of both programs working together plus the increase in engagement with the Traditional Leaders has necessitated a rethink about priorities this year. Understandably growth and development needs to be thoroughly investigated and costed however it is through GG and your support we are able to cautiously say YES!
We currently have 720 families involved in the SHG program. These women are all caring for multiple children and are becoming financially independent, this means the children will have what they need physically to grow and develop mentally, biologically, emotionally etc. Mothers will no longer be as stressed about financial issues such as where will the families next meal come from.
Currently we have approximately 50 groups in 50 different villages in Greater Tzaneen which include 1,400 children in the Children’s Program, we are still recovering our numbers slowly from Covid. Sadly, many supportive teachers and principals passed away during Covid and the Dept. of Education’s reluctance to reopen their doors to KTD196 has been problematic but with increased support from the Traditional Leaders and the parents this should change throughout the course of 2023.
We also work into 5 other districts through our partners.
If you would like to support us on a regular basis through a monthly donation please go to the link below, any amount every month makes a huge difference. If you already donate on a monthly or regular basis, thank you. Your support enables us to continue so strongly for the sake of the kids.
Blessings to you and your family
ps I have attached a YouTube video of the ladies celebrating the formation of the CLA (Cluster Level). They are singing a gospel song about Noah and the flood, no longer will they be subjected to the flood of poverty, thanks to your support.
I know I have been focused on SHG for the past few GG reports however, it is worth getting excited about. Unbeknownst to me, while KTD196 was hosting the training for the Cluster Level Association or next level training for the SHG for representatives from around South Africa, the International representative and National representative where going out to the communities and assessing the viability of starting a Cluster Level group immediately. The result is, KTD196 now has a CLA, Cluster Level Association.
What is a Cluster Level Association? I can hear you ask!
A Cluster Level Association (CLA) is a platform for sharing of experiences of SHGs and to extend mutual support to improve the overall performance of SHGs. The CLA will create voice and space for the poor in the village and help initiate development interventions for poverty reduction.
There are Three sets of principles underlie the Cluster approach and are expected to be adhered to by all Clusters and Cluster partners:
Role :The role of CLA are as follows :
So, this is particularly exciting as it dovetails with the work we are doing with the children for the next 5years on Child Participation and giving children a voice in their homes, schools and communities at the same time. Empowering people to have a voice especially those who are disenfranchised like the poor and children, one will be able to support the other and vice-a-versa. It’s a huge undertaking but with the ladies on board, success is much more likely.
Currently, we have 760 families represented within the SHG process plus over 1,300 children. As an organization, that is huge.
I am sure you will agree that this is an amazing opportunity for the poor of Greater Tzaneen. It all started because of your support of a dream we had for the futures of the children we serve and now the mothers we serve. You believed in our dream, we are fulfilling that dream, through your support. I hope you can hear the excitement.
There is a lot of hard work to be done, I have worked previously with people who have been basically disregarded, disenfranchised, discarded and made vulnerable, overcoming those mind sets is huge but possible. THANK YOU For being a part of the journey and for making such amazing changes in our communities and the lives of the children for ever.
My name is Olga, I live in Myakayaka village. I am originally from Mozambique, I came to South Africa to seek greener pastures. I have 4 children and they were all born in South Africa. We all don’t have legal documents to be in South Africa so my children are not receiving the Child Support Grant or any form of support. In the community my children and I were called names because of our nationality and background.
I joined the Ahi ti pfuxeni (meaning let’s wake up and start working) SHG last year in July. Initially when I joined SHG I couldn’t understand what the group was all about and how it worked. I just knew that we will be saving money and we are not going to get the money back at the end of the year. I joined the group because my neighbour who was in a similar living condition as me and from Mozambique had joined. I am a very quiet person and prefer internalizing my problems because I have been judged enough in the community. In 2022 I have seen a huge change in me, through the group I am now an interactive person. I am able to speak out about my problems without the fear of being judged.
Even in my household I am a present mother in my children’s lives because of all the advice and discussions we have had in the group. I can communicate, laugh and play with the children and make sure that we are all happy. In the beginning I was always stressed about the challenges that we were faced with daily and had no one to talk to but now I have a group of sisters whom I can talk too.
I have seen and witnessed the impact that being part of SHG has had in my life. All thanks to Ahi ti pfuxeni SHG I am an independent woman who has a lot of self-confidence. I am able to laugh with other people and I am looking very beautiful now. I have also started a small business, I sell 2 litre cool drinks, fried fish and fat cakes in our community.
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