“My sister is six years old. There are no grown-ups living with us. I need a bathroom tap and clothes and shoes. And water also, inside the house. But especially somebody to tuck me and my sister in at night.” (13 year old child) (www.avert.org)
The heart felt words of this thirteen year old child eloquently depict the harsh reality that faces an ever increasing number of children in South Africa. Left alone to fend for themselves in an uncaring and over whelming world this child identifies the single most important thing missing from their lives – someone to care for them, someone to love them.
DH Children’s home is a safe haven for orphaned, abandoned and vulnerable children. We exist because South Africa is estimated to have at least 1.9 million AIDS orphans (3.4 million orphans in total) and while we cannot help all of these precious children we can help those that are directed to our doors – one child at a time.
On October 29th 2008 the then Minister for the Department of Social Development Mr Skweyiya made the following statement “…South Africa is facing a challenge of increasing numbers of orphaned children, abandoned babies, worrying levels of abuse, neglect and exploitation of children. Most of these children need permanent homes”. (www.ngopulse.org)
DH Board & Management concurs with the sentiment that each child needs a permanent home, but more importantly a family unit to grow up in. Strong families make strong communities. A child admitted to DH will therefore become an integral part of a family unit where they will grow and flourish. Each family unit will be headed by either house parents or a house mother thereby ensuring that there will always be someone to tuck them in at night.
Schools can play a crucial role in improving the prospects of AIDS orphans and securing their future. A good school education can give children a higher self-esteem, better job prospects and economic independence
At DH, we uphold the heartfelt belief that each child is full of potential.
Potential – defined as being the capacity to develop into something in the future due to the presence of latent God given qualities and abilities that may be developed and lead to future success.
We at DH recognize that it is privilege to be entrusted with the responsibility of providing each of our children with the opportunity to develop these latent God give qualities and abilities. To this end we have chosen to send all DH children to Mtuba Christian Academy (MCA).
Mtuba Christian Academy is a fully registered private school that provides a Christian based education for children aged 3 and over. The need for a quality education is highlighted by the very high level of functional illiteracy (41%) that characterizes the adult population within the Umkhanyakude District.
The mission of the Academy is to utilise our unique skills, which are evident in our dynamic team, to offer our students quality education and to strive towards excellence in all we do. We will endeavor to equip each child with sound Biblically -based education and life skills, as well as Godly wisdom, insight and character in order to for them to become mature, stable and productive members of society. (www.mcacademy.co.za)
While English is not the primary language spoken in the homes of most children that attend MCA or for that matter the majority of children who call Destiny House home it is the language of the masses and therefore the key to opening the doors of possibility. MCA and Destiny House Management therefore view the teaching of English as being foundational along with numeracy and computer literacy.
Attending school not only allows for the development of our children academically but it also allows our children to become a part of the local community. With time once broken lives begin to take on a sense of “normality” as they embrace the highs and lows of school life; friendships are formed and daily routines provide the stability that our children need to move on in their lives.