Consistent community interaction through volunteerism
Our vision is to ensure that abandoned children are shown love and care through personal interaction by spending time playing games and engaging in everyday activities as we would with our own children.
This gives the children hope for a brighter future and to know that they too are loved. In doing this we also support the permanent caretakers by giving them an emotional and physical break which enables them to reboot and to continue caring for the children.
Society today continues to live life ignoring the mass problem of child abandonment. This problem overburdens safe houses and children’s homes with increasing running costs of which majority is toward daily living costs per child.
Forgotten is medical costs as most abandoned babies are found in critical condition. It is not possible to obtain medical aid for these children leaving safe houses and homes to cover the cost which most of the time is impossible. State hospitals are therefore utilised and not always the best option. Costs to run the children back and forth to the hospital are also critical. Medical items such as colonoscopy bags and medicines are costly. Bare necessities like baby formula, nappies, bum cream, food, clothing are used up extremely quickly with the number of babies, toddlers and children in need. Always forgotten are the staff that commit 24 hours, every day of their lives caring for these abandoned children, always received by the homes in their worst state. These unforgotten heroes also need a break and need to be thanked and appreciated. Even in state hospitals children’s wards are overloaded and nurses are not able to give personal care to each and every child. Parents do not have the funds to travel back and forth to care for the children and so the children are left at the hospitals alone.
Above all the root of the problem is the young women in the townships who clearly do not have knowledge of their options regarding birth control. Those that are already pregnant and those that have already given birth do not have the knowledge and/or support to care for their babies in the best way possible. Even worse they do not have the means to care for their babies in times of ill health. In the affluent world there are many options… family, books, internet, Doctors, midwives, friends, money. Our aim as is to relieve the staff, the unforgotten heroes as often as possible ensuring that they too have a break and are able to come back fresh ready to continue caring for these children and fulfilling their tasks with love. To give a new fresh of hands and love to abandoned children by showing them love as a parent would do by doing normal daily tasks, feeding, bathing, playing, putting to sleep and simply talking to these children. To collect items and goods essential to caring for these children. To package gift packages for new moms who do not have anything to care for their babies. To work with government on implementing a plan on how to assist educating young women on contraception options. To work with government in creating child care hubs in every township which will give new mothers access to educational training on how to care for their new babies. Possibly these hubs can also be used as baby sitting centres.
Encouraging society to volunteer one full day of their year at a baby safe house, children’s home, hospital baby/children’s ward or any other children’s care facility. This will relieve the staff and ensure they too are given some time off to refresh and continue with their responsibility to love and care for the children. As parents we understand the desperate need for a break and to be appreciated.
Ensuring that there is a network of volunteers consistently available to places in need. This can only be achieved by increasing the number of volunteers as quickly as possible by consistently recruiting new members. An annual roster is completed and monitored. The committee will monitor the roster with weekly reminders and communication between the volunteer and children’s home/safe-house.
Seeking out all children’s homes and safe-houses to ensure that our data base is up to date and that homes most in need are assisted first. Information on their needs will be kept updated and available to all members of Angel Network.
Collecting new or used baby care goods for new mothers to care for their newborn babies. Packages will be made and delivered to the mothers personally at the state hospitals. This might assist with the pressure of caring for their newborn baby.
Sourcing a sponsor who is willing to print Xhosa literature for new moms on how to care for their newborn baby. Alternatively encourage a publisher to put together a very simple guide based on an existing one in the Xhosa language. Mothers in the rural communities do not have the knowledge on how to care for their new babies. They do not know how to prevent illness, how to look out for dangerous illness and when to rush to a Doctor when a serious illness is detected. We strongly believe that once these young women and new mothers are educated they will feel more equipped to care for their new baby and not feel the desire to abandon them.
Working with government in facilitating regular educational group sessions on how to access and control contraception. Having informal group talks with teenagers about sex and contraception and informing them about other support groups available to them.
Working with government in facilitating the implementation of child care hubs which can be used for the regular contraception training mentioned above, the actual regular distribution of contraception, pregnant mothers training and support sessions, new-born baby clinic check-ups and baby-sitting services over weekends. Should government not be interested or not have the capacity to partner with Angel Network in implementing the child care hubs – we will fundraise internally through our network of volunteers to establish these centres in each and every township