Child & Youth Care
We believe that if a child is given a stable, loving, and supportive home environment they will flourish.
Unfortunately finding long term and successful placements for children who bear the effects of FASD or similar developmental disorders is far and few. We have made it our mission to create as far as possible a home environment within a structured environment that allows for control and supervision for children such as these.
Since 2014 Home of Hope has had a dream of evolving and moving from our “Cluster Foster Home Scheme” to a registered CYCC (Child and Youth Care Centre). We are very pleased to say that after a lot of hard work and help from our loyal Donors we were able to make that dream come true. In August 2018 Home of Hope was thrilled to announce that our application was approved and we are now running as a Child and Youth Care Centre. Our newly registered Child and Youth Care Centre allows for service rendering that is specifically tailored to meet the individual and unique needs we have identified in our children.
In looking after 20 children we aim to provide a holistic service that strives to equip our children to reach their unique potential regardless of where they come from or have experienced prior. We aim to keep their living environment as normal and stable as possible by providing long term care so that we can allow for them to become equipped and responsible members of society thus breaking the stigma that has been brought on by their disability.
We strive to teach our children basic responsibilities and practical life skills by giving them tasks and chores in and around their home, we teach social and emotional skills through various structured programmes and “in the moment teaching” in their everyday lives.
Our staff are handpicked with our family-culture in mind and we are proud of their willingness to learn together with our children and to go the extra mile in providing services in our ever developing care model.
Special Needs School
Amathemba means ‘our hope’ in the Xhosa language – one of South Africa’s 11 national languages. We opened Amathemba in 2010 to address the educational needs of children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) who, as a result of cognitive, behavioural and emotional difficulties, cannot cope within the mainstream educational system. It is one of only a few schools in South Africa catering for the special needs of FASD and neurologically challenged children.
At Amathemba, our trained teachers, therapists and support staff provide language, literacy, numeracy, life skills and social skills from the core curriculum, which consists of different learning programs carefully chosen and tailored to our children’s specific needs.
From the outset, each child’s specific needs are identified in an individualised education plan (IEP), which is constantly adapted as the child develops. This individualised approach to learning ensures the child is prepared for either integration into a mainstream academically focused curriculum or a vocational curriculum with the aim of obtaining vocational employment.
The progress that the children attending Amathema School are making is truly remarkable. We are immensely proud of our students, some of whom were deemed to be uneducable by mainstream schools, but have shown steady improvement and, against all odds, are now reading and writing.
Every child with special needs should have the right to access education.
For more information on how to attend Amathemba School, contact email@example.com
Community Support Programmes
Mentoring and Parent Support
We understand that caregivers of children with FASD carry a huge physical and emotional burden and they often have no support in the challenge of raising these children.
In response, Home of Hope runs a Mentor and Parent Support Programme.
Support is given to the family by a mentor who visits the family on a regular basis and assists them in the following ways:
- Giving them information on FASD and providing them with practical support and interventions to address the challenges they face with their children.
- Information on FASD is given to extended family members as well as to the communities in which these children live.
- The mentor works with caregivers, family members and service providers to find ways of changing the child’s environment to suit the child’s needs.
- Families are helped to become strong and independent so that they can help other families in their communities whose children suffer from FASD and other neuro-developmental disorders.
This programme is a free service offered by Home of Hope and continues only with the kind support of donors and benefactors.
Every child with FASD deserves to be understood and properly cared for.
We increase awareness about FASD amongst professionals, such as teachers, nurses, social workers and prison officers, and educate them on identifying and working with people who suffer from the condition.
To date we have given training workshops to safety houses, foster homes, people who run prison programs, students in UCT and the University of Stellenbosch, hospital/clinic nurses and supervisors, legal aid criminal lawyers, community workers and school doctors/nurses.
The professional training consists of an overview of FASD and a presentation tailor made to the needs of the professional audience.
The Professional Training is a free service offered by Home of Hope and continues only with the kind support of donors and benefactors.
Living Life Project
The objective of this project is to support young adults with FASD and Special Needs, with skills that they require to live their life at the most independent level possible. While most children long for their 18th birthday, this highly anticipated date is often marked with uncertainty for children in the care system and especially those with Special Needs.
Unfortunately, most foster homes and children’s homes do not provide services once a child has turned 18 years old. There is also no existing support structures that can assist these young adults in their next steps of becoming independent.
Many of these new young adults are then returned to the same homes from which they were removed or are placed in unfamiliar surroundings, thus creating the opportunity for the cycle to repeat itself. Together with this, young adults with FASD and Special Needs are vulnerable to secondary disabilities which includes trouble with the law, mental health problems, an inability to live independently, victimization and young adults that are more likely to be unemployed.
As an organisation that aims to break the cycles of abuse, addiction and abandonment, we are aiming to bridge the gap for children on their journey into adulthood. With the Living Life Project, we aim to provide them with meaning, purpose, social opportunities and direction to navigate life towards becoming as self-sufficient as possible.
Home of Hope also plans on building additional networks with surrounding Companies and Organisations that can provide support services for each unique individual and those who are willing to offer placements and internships for youth that present with specific strengths and talents providing a long-term sustainable solution.
We have decided to expand this project by establishing a Working Care Farm called Anselm Farm in Morningstar. We are certain that it can be developed to offer an abundance of fresh food, a nursery, free range eggs and composting. All of which can be used in our existing projects as well as be sold to the public which in turn will make this project sustainable. With a dual purpose in mind, this farm will be called home to young adults who will never be able to live on their own and have nowhere else to go as well as providing a safe place during the day for young adults with special needs who want to partake in this programme, but still have a loving home and family to return to.
Want to volunteer with us?
Whatever your skills and experience, and however much time you can offer, we have a volunteering opportunity for you. You’ll get support and training if you need it, you’ll meet lots of new people and you’ll make a real difference to the lives of children.
We value the support of every single volunteer. Without them, it wouldn’t be possible to achieve the outcomes that we have for children in South Africa.
To become a volunteer, you will need to email firstname.lastname@example.org
You will need to complete and return The Volunteer Application Form .
Once the completed application is returned, the various processes and volunteer options will be explained to you.
The following documents are required in addition to the Application Form when applying to be part of our volunteer programme:
- Three contactable references
- A certified copy of your ID
- A valid police clearance certificate
There is a separate recruitment process for international volunteers. Please contact email@example.com directly for more information.