Babies Home

Adoption Story from Durban To Calgary

Seven years ago, siblings Jade and James made the 16,285 km journey to Calgary, Canada. There, winter lows hit the minus-thirties, a long way from subtropical Durban where The Domino Foundation’s Babies’ Home had been their world for as long as they could remember.

Online searched led Canadian fireman, Owen Watson, and his wife, Jolene, to Domino’s website. They made contact and heard of a little girl and her brother needing a loving home. The couple made the long journey to meet their “ready-made” family and then take them to their new home where everything would be totally different to what they had ever known.

Dad Watson recently emailed the home to say both are very healthy and are growing like weeds. 11-year old Jade has all the attitude of a healthy tweenager and 9-year old James apparently could “power the entire city of Joburg on the amount of energy he expends in a day”. The two have a good solid group of friends and an exceptionally supportive community of neighbours and the loving foundation received whilst in Domino’s care! #foreverfamilies

If you would like more information on adoption or support the Domino Babies Home to love and care for more champions like Jade and James Owen please connect with us on admin@domino.org.za – Reference I love adoption

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Teaching the Toddlers

Early in 2017, Liezel Rabey moved to KZN from Gauteng with her family. She contacted The Domino Foundation, wanting to be involved in some aspect of the foundation’s activities. Liezel, an educational psychologist, has a passion for seeing toddlers established on a firm grounding for the school years ahead of them. She has been running an informal play school at The Domino Foundation’s Babies’ Homes since then three times a week, with two other ladies, Amanda Pet and Kerrie Tomlinson, having taken up the challenge to increase that to a fourth day each week. Music, art and dance lessons are great fun and develop the little people’s co-ordination and imagination. Their fine motor skills are strengthened through puzzles, play dough and threading. Every second week, the children are seeing their worlds enlarged with visits to exciting places like Animal Farm, the Mitchell Park Zoo, Ushaka, the Port Natal Maritime Museum where the toddlers had a wonderful time exploring the steam tug and the minesweeper, King Shaka and Virginia airports, the Trampoline and Bird Parks. Liezel has set up a veggie garden where the children take part in the planting, watering, weeding. Here they are admiring the very healthy broccoli in the garden.

The vision of the Babies’ Homes Programme is to provide a safe, loving and nurturing environment for abandoned babies and toddlers before their being adopted into a loving family unit.

While the children are in our homes, we ensure that they have 24 hour care in a holistically safe environment which caters to their physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual needs. Our desire is to provide as stable a home-life for these little people as we can so that their transition into their adoptive families is as easy as possible.

We have items which we need on an ongoing basis to enable us to keep functioning effectively. We gratefully receive donations of any of the items on the following list:

 

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2016: What a year!

This year has been a time of exponential growth, tough challenges, our faith been tested and of course, many lives been changed. In 2016 alone we’ve been able to impact the lives of over 5000 individuals on a daily basis. During our journey we’ve seen 3 key areas being highlighted:


1. Increasing our areas of influence

A big cause for celebration has been The Domino Foundation moving from being a North Durban NPO to a nationwide NPO.

We’re excited to announce that The Domino Foundation’s areas of influence now include: Waterloo, Oshebni, Amanzimtoti, Inner city Durban and Cape Town. We’ve also continued to strengthen our existing relationships with donors, volunteers, NPOS and governmental departments like the Department of Home Affairs, the Department of Social Development and the National Prosecuting Authority.


2.Partnering with local churches

We have loved partnering with other churches to outwork their social justice initiatives.

This year we’ve partnered with Glenridge (Durban Inner City) and The Rock (Umhlanga) through the outworking of the Red light Anti-Human Trafficking programme; Life Changers (Tableview, Cape Town) for the Recycle Swop Shop and Kingsway Church International (Amanzimtoti) to open another sandwich kitchen. As we’ve been able to share our experience, skills, knowledge and feeding expertise we’ve seen an incredible growth in the Amanzimtoti Sandwich Kitchen. In just eight months the kitchen has grown to preparing 660 sandwiches a week – an incredible growth rate!


3.Beneficiary Impact

We started the year with four programmes and expanded to seven community transformational initiatives.

Babies’ Homes – We provided a loving, family environment for 15 children in our two transitional homes with 6 babies being adopted into their ‘forever homes’.

Life Skills Programme– We worked with 4 under-resourced primary schools and 726 children on a weekly basis through lessons, one-on-one counselling sessions and after school activities – all aiming to empower learners to make wise life choices.

ECD Programme– We started the year upskilling and transforming 23 crèches into sustainable small businesses and places of active learning and increased to 44 establishments by year-end. Our work in the ECD space ensures that over children are receiving quality foundation-phase development throughout KZN.

Feeding Programme– We opened an additional kitchen to feed the south Durban basin, as well as added an additional 17 establishments (a combination of crèches/kindergartens and primary schools) to our feeding programme across KZN. By the year-end we were feeding a total of 55 establishments and averaging an incredible 98 000 meals a month!

Red light Anti-Human Trafficking – This programme joined Domino in 2016 and in 2017 we look forward to welcoming 8 ladies into our programme where they’ll be assisted, cared for, restored and released.

Recycle Swop Shops – The social justice and environmental programme joined Domino in 2016 with three swop shops operating in the Western Cape.

Bursary Programme – In 2017 the programme will fund 5 students’ tertiary education, giving them the opportunity to build themselves a future through education.


Thanks to donors and volunteers, your support has enabled us to continue changing thousands of lives through showing mercy, combatting injustice and empowering individuals throughout our beautiful country of South Africa. If you would like to partner with us for 2017 please let us know.


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Stories from the nursery: 3rd Quarter 2016

The two Domino Babies Homes have seen a flurry of activity over the past three months. Not only has there been lots of day-to-day maintenance as well as volunteers coming to play with our babies but on the night of the 1st September 2016, a passerby alerted us to a tiny newborn that had been abandoned on our doorstep. Needless to say, we jumped into rescue mode.

We immediately brought her inside and warmed her up, phoned the police and then took her to the hospital to be checked. Not even a day old the little girl might have had a rough start to her life but we count it SUCH a privilege to care for these precious children and are constantly in awe that we are able to change destinies through all programmes at The Domino Foundation.

Thank you to everyone who has supported our two Babies Homes – your support has not gone unnoticed! A big thank you to Dischem  and the Christain Motorcycle Association who donated large amounts of much-needed baby supplies.

 

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In Ububele…

Baby R continues to thrive in Grade R and in all school activities. The lively seven-year-old has been with Domino for a year. Just like the other children Baby R started to come into her own after arriving at Domino, the care and love of the Babies’ Home staff settling her soul and stimulating her mind.

Baby S’s is a five-year-old boy who arrived at the Domino Babies’ Home almost a year ago after he was abandoned at Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital. His health is improving every day and we know he’ll be strong enough to go to school next year.

Baby U is settling in nicely to her new home and is learning how to speak English and isiZulu. The police found the little two-year-old girl walking on the street. Precious and the caregivers believe she’s from another African country because she’s been unable to speak in English, isiZulu or Xhosa. After a few months of gentle guidance and teaching, she now is starting to learn the names of the other children and some simple words.

Baby V is a bubbly little ball of joy. The seven-month-old has just learned how to crawl and is enjoying her new transition home. Child welfare is still investigating her family and deciding if she should be adopted or taken back to her family.

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In Fairhavens…

Baby Q is a healthy seven-month-old who has recovered from his chest and breathing problems. He’s now ready for adoption and the social workers are looking for a home for Baby Q.

Baby M is a beautiful five-year-old girl who has been with Domino Babies’ Home for over a year. She loves going to Preschool and is busy preparing for the school play, which is coming up soon. Child welfare is still looking for a loving home for the little girl.

Baby N is the brother of Baby M and has just gone through a phase of ‘the terrible twos’ – something all parents will be familiar with! The home’s routine, as well as the caregivers’ constant love, has ensured Baby N has moved through the terrible twos and into the next, much calmer, stage of his development.

Baby O and Baby P are sisters and are in the process of finding their forever home. As it is with all adoptions and fostering it’s up to the children to determine the pace of leaving the transitional home – once they have warmed up to their new parents then the adoption can go ahead.

 

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Stories from the nursery: 2nd Quarter 2016

Our two Babies Homes, Fairhavens and Ububele, are currently caring for ten babies and toddlers. That ten’s little lives we’re able to provide a safe, stimulating and happy home for. Apart from being busy with the daily routines of caring for ten little ones we’ve also busy with getting our children ready for adoption. That means visits to court, doctors and meetings with the social workers. This past quarter we’ve said goodbye to one of our babies, a seven-month-old, who has been adopted by an awesome local family.

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In Ububele…

Baby R has been with Crisis Care mom Precious for almost a year. The little six year old is at a local Preschool and loves learning new things everyday. Swimming and ballet are some of her favourite after-school activities and she even received a medal for swimming. Baby R is now ready for adoption.

Baby S’s health condition is improving. The five year old boy arrived at the Domino Babies’ Home almost a year ago after he was abandoned at Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital. When he arrived he was very sick and it was decided that for his health it was better for him to stay at the home and not go to preschool so that he can gain his strength back – which has been doing in leaps and bounds!

Baby T is a happy twenty month year old baby who is doing well under the care and guidance of the home. Since he’s arrived he’s gained weight and has learned to crawl – keeping the caregivers running around after him!

Baby U is a healthy little two year old girl who was found walking on the street by the police. Precious and the caregivers believe she’s from another African country because she’s been unable to speak in English, isiZulu or Xhosa. After taking some time to settle into her new home she’s finally starting to learn some words in isiZulu and English and is slowly gaining her communication skills back.

Baby V was bought to the social workers by her grandma because it is believed that her mother is unfit to look after her child. A bubbly little ball of joy the seven month old has just learned how to crawl and is enjoying her new transition home.

In Fairhavens…

Baby Q is a seven month old that is almost ready for adoption. He’s been battling with his breathing so has been undergoing testing at Addington Hospital with results still pending. We’re praying for a quick and smooth recovery.

Baby M is a beautiful five year old girl who has been with Domino Babies’ Home for over a year. She loves going to Preschool and always comes home excited and ready for school the next day.

Baby N is brother of Baby M and has really grown up in the home and is learning his place in the house. He’s now a two year old boy, very different from the baby he was  when he arrived .

Baby O is a little girl who just had her third birthday. She’s sister to Baby P, an eleven month old. Both pairs of siblings are in complicated legal cases and have not been abandoned but have been placed in the Domino Babies’ Home by Social workers because their home environment is unsafe. Their cases are both still pending so until they are sortd Domino Babies’ Home will continue to provide a place of refuge and restoration.

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Babies Effects 4th Quarter 2015

This year the Domino Foundation’s two Babies Homes were able to provide a safe, loving and nurturing environment for twelve abandoned babies and toddlers. That means that twelve little lives were rescued from unfair circumstances and cared for by caregivers. We celebrate the four children who found their forever home and the one precious life who was restored to his family.

One such story of joy is about Baby Senzo’s international adoption. Because his parents were from Denmark they only had two weeks of bonding time before they flew to South Africa to take him home. To get Senzo ready for his adoption they gave him a storybook for house mother, Precious, to read to him every night. This helped him become familiar with his soon to be pet dog and family and brother, who is also adopted like him. What innovative parenting!

Another amazing story from the Babies Home has been the restoration of a brother and sister. The both arrived at the Babies Home at the beginning of the year with blotted pasts. Through some ingenious investigation from Child Welfare it was discovered that they were in fact brother and sister, and unbeknownst to everyone had been placed in the same home. At the end of this year they were both adopted by the same family, a testament to God’s bigger plans.

The Domino Foundation Babies Homes would not be able to continue running without the generosity of gifts and time by this community. Thank you to everyone has contributed in some way or form – you have made us shine.

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Join the #DominoRiders as they tackle the 2016 CAPE TOWN CYCLE TOUR to raise funds for abandoned babies in KZN!

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THE DOMINO FOUNDATION – WHO WE ARE  

We are a non-profit organisation that believes in the power of a changed life. We assist the most vulnerable in communities and have noticed that by changing their life, they continue to change their families lives and the community at large. This creates a beautiful #DominoEffect of changed lives, changing lives. We have a range of community outreach programmes that focus on the individual to empower, uplift and transform their lives so they too can impact the nation and others around them. Across our 5 programmes we are impacting just over 4000 individuals on a daily basis between the ages of 0 – 18 years.

THE CAUSE – ABANDONED BABIES IN KZN

THE DOMINO FOUNDATION has two abandoned babies homes situated in Durban North. Our heart and vision is to create a safe, stimulating and nurturing environment for these discarded children and to see them restored to fullness and adopted into a loving family unit. We have had well over 100 babies adopted from our homes and the recent opening of our second house has allowed us to increase our capacity and impact the millions of orphans in our country. The #DominoRiders will raise much needed funds for THE DOMINO FOUNDATION to continue to provide this life-saving service to orphaned and abandoned babies and give them a life-changing second chance in life.

#DOMINORIDERS – THE CYCLE CHALLENGE & DETAILS

Join the #DominoRiders as they tackle 2016’s Cape Argus Cycle Tour in support of THE DOMINO FOUNDATION. The team will take to the beautiful peninsula of Cape Town to cycle through some of the world’s most spectacular scenery, while completing the 109KM that is The Cape Town Cycle Tour. THE DOMINO FOUNDATION has secured a charity batch which provides GUARANTEED ENTRIES, a GROUP START TIME (seeded times allow for earlier start if rider qualifies) and LATER CLOSING DATES for entries.

The #DominoRiders also qualify for a truly spectacular cycling package.

R3000-00 per entry gets you;

  • Guaranteed Cape Town Cycle Race entry
  • High quality Domino Cycling kit (Cycling shirt & pants)
  • Domino Goodie Bag
  • And a generous donation towards the abandoned babies homes

Entries open on Friday 06 November 2015 with all payment & details required by Wednesday 13 Jan 2016.

Simply contact Tarin Stevenson (tarin@domino.org.za) if you are interested in joining the #DominoRiders as they tackle the CapeTown Cycle Race 2016 for THE DOMINO FOUNDATION!

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Babies Affects June/July 2015

Big news in the Fairhavens Babies Home has been the adoption of one the precious babies into their forever home. We celebrate with this wonderful occasion and pray that baby is loved unconditionally. With this exciting news Fairhaven’s prepares itself for the arrival of a new little life and looks forward to being a safe place until he or she finds their forever home.

The six children who currently call Fairhavens home loved their visit from community service volunteers from local surrounding schools that came to help at Domino for the week. The children were treated to hand painting and plenty of interactive playtime, a very important form of stimulation that helps to develop gross and fine motor skills. Gross motor development is movements that involve using the large muscles of the body; so rolling over and catching a ball and fine motor development involve movements using smaller muscles like painting.

Other exciting news has been the development of Fairhaven’s very own veggie garden on the property to help supplement the children’s meals. One of the I-Can staff has been looking after the plot and has just been sent on a training time at the Domino Foundation veggie gardens. This training will help the vegetables, and the children, flourish!

Looking after small children requires 24 hour attention and the Babies home staff work shifts to ensure every little body is carefully cared for. In saying this, the home is looking for two small TV’s for the night staff to enjoy when the babies are sleeping. Please contact the office if you are able to help.

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There’s so many ways to support Domino!

Did you know that you can support the Domino Foundation through a number of loyalty programmes?

Paint Experts Rewards Programme Paint Expert has a loyalty card whereby a certain percentage of your sale is discounted and redirected into a charity of your choice. The Domino Foundation is one of the charities and receives a voucher to use at Paint Expert during the year.

Litres for Education Litres For Education is an innovative initiative that offers the everyday South African an opportunity to support their local school, charity or community project on the amount of fuel purchased monthly. By supporting your local donor LFE service station you will be supporting your chosen beneficiary every time you fill up. Fill in the online form to become a LFE member and choose the Domino Foundation as a beneficiary. Every time you fill up a the preferred service station (map online) 10c per litre of your fuel purchase goes to the Domino Foundation.

MySchool The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet fundraising programme is one of South Africa’s biggest community programmes and allows cardholders to make a difference to a worthy cause without it costing you a cent! The Domino Foundation is on the loyalty programme which means every time you swipe your care at a number of retailers, a percentage of your sale comes to us! You can also check out our donte page that has a range of easy and safe options to donate to the Domino Foundation including once-off-transfers, a debit order system and a sms line.

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What would you do if you found an abandoned baby?

Carers (39)What to do if you find an abandoned baby

Vulnerable, exposed, helpless… an abandoned baby begins their life in a powerless position. But that doesn’t have to be the end of their story and with the right knowledge and support structures these precious lives can not only be saved but delivered into greatness.

There are no recent statistics on child abandonment in South Africa, but most organisations believe that the numbers have increased since the statistic released by Child Welfare that 3500 babies were abandoned in 2010.* A highly complex issue abandonment is caused by many factors, including weak support structures, gender inequality, violence, HIV/AIDS, mass urbanisation, the vulnerability of young girls and overwhelming poverty.* Abandoned babies can be left in a number of places, with the highest frequency of spots being toilets, drains, sewers and gutters; rubbish dumps and landfills; parks or an open veld; baby safes and hospitals.*

Whatever the reason and wherever they are placed it’s important to know exactly what to do in this situation so that help can be administered immediately. Child Welfare Durban and District (CWDD) is mandated by the Department of Social Development (DSD) to render services to the abandoned babies.They have kindly shared their expertise on what to do if you find an abandoned baby.

  • CWDD would then submit a Form 39 application to the DSD on behalf of the temporary safe facility to obtain authorisation to care for the child temporarily whilst CWDD completes the investigations on the child.
  • You are allowed to pick up the baby to share some warmth and love as it will probably be cold. Unfortunately, if the baby has passed away it cannot be touched.
  • Phone the South African Police Force (SAPS). This must be your first port of call because in essence you are stepping into a criminal case. Abandonment is illegal and the SAPS will need to open a case and start an investigation.  SAPS would then liaise with CWDD to place the child in temporary safe care in a facility such as Fairhavens Baby Home.
  • Stay where you are. You are not allowed to take the baby to a place of safety (like Fairhavens) or the hospital, that is the role of the police officer and they will come to you.
  • Once the police have arrived they will take the baby to the District surgeon for a medical assessment.
  • From this point on CWDD will investigate into the case. Once the Form 39 is approved by DSD, the SAPS will inform the Children’s Court that the child has been abandoned and recommend an initiation of the Children’s Court Inquiry. The Children’s Court will then refer the Inquiry to CWDD for investigations pending finalisation.  Upon receipt of this referral a social worker would be assigned to the child to undertake the necessary investigations and recommend to the court options for the permanency placement of the child.

Throughout this whole process it’s important to keep calm and think clearly. Seek counsel if you are battling with the trauma of the event.

Abandonment and adoption are governed by Children’s Act 38 of 2005, one of the largest pieces of  legislation to be created under our new constitution in SA.

Sources

-Jasu Jagjivan, Adoptions: Manager, Child Welfare Durban & District

*National Adoption Coalition, Fact Sheet on Child Abandonment Research in South Africa, http://www.adoptioncoalitionsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/Fact-Sheet-Research-on-Child-Abandonment-in-South-Africa_Final2.pdf

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