Thembalitsha – Village of Hope
Accommodation Play area The House Family
Every three years, High Cross Church members elect an overseas charity to support. From January 2011, our charity is Village of Hope.
The Village of Hope is a Thembalitsha Foundation project based on a farm in Grabouw 60km east of Capetown, South Africa. Although it is in a beautiful area surrounded by vineyards and apples, Grabouw is where the workers live. It is a town of 65,000 people, where 40% of households live on less than £170 per month. HIV and TB are huge problem diseases and there are also other drug and alcohol related problems.
The focus of Village of Hope is to care for young children infected or affected by HIV, AIDS or TB in a 9 bedded unit which opened in April 2009. The children arrive at the Village following medical care and are medically stable but unable to be looked after by their own family.
The aim is to see each child back in a loving family home and on average one child per month has been placed with a family. Some of the children have complex problems and will need full time care in the future, so the project is investigating the possibility of providing cluster homes with staff within the community. But more funding is required to expand into such areas.
The project has extended its outreach programme in the community through kids clubs activities every day after school for 9-15 year olds. They use sports activities to teach key Bible-based life skills such as team work, as well as teaching hygiene and personal health. In the school holidays, trips to the beautiful beaches are organised, which for most children would be otherwise inaccessible.
The wider Thembalitsha Foundation also runs health and education projects in the local area. But the Village of Hope project is one we were moved to support, where a modest financial contribution can make a big difference.
If you would like to see more you can pick up a leaflet from the Church Office or visit the website
The photo on the right shows Village of Hope volunteers Rob and Emily House, with their children Rosie and Isaac, on their visit to High Cross Church in June 2011. At the rear of the photo are Minister Revd David Hamblin and Church Member Barbara Gathercole.