Indlela

And the Effect Keeps Going

Durban North-based non-profit organisation Indlela has unveiled its new name, The Domino Foundation, together with a new corporate identity and website, www.domino.org.za

However, the outreach programmes that have positively impacted the North Durban community under the Indlela umbrella over the past eight years will continue to assist and uplift the needy in our local communities, confirmed Mickey Wilkins, Chairman of The Domino Foundation. The four major programmes managed by The Domino Foundation are: The Domino Foundation Babies’ Home (previously Fairhavens); The Domino Foundation Feeding Programme; The Domino Foundation Early Childhood Development Programme; and The Domino Foundation Life Skills Programme. All these interventions aim to empower individuals in every facet of their lives and equip them to lead purpose-filled lives.

The need to re-brand our organisation stemmed from two main reasons. First, there are now a number of different NPOs using the name ‘Indlela’, which has caused some confusion in the Donor Community. Secondly, when we started in 2004 the name, Indlela, was relevant to what we did then, (i.e. our community in need, and in need of assistance) but today we are seeing the fruit of that work i.e. large numbers of changed lives and communities that are changing quite significantly. And so the creative re-branding process began.

“We wanted to ensure that our image and name accurately reflect what we do,” explained Wilkins. “We noticed that by working with individuals – be they homeless babies, hungry children, or disadvantaged school-learners – the positive changes we helped to effect in their lives had a domino effect on the lives of their families and, ultimately, their communities. Our new name and corporate identity encapsulates that ripple effect.” Wilkins was quick to add that apart from that, nothing has changed! “Our passion for, and commitment to, communities in need, our management team, the partners we work with, our solid reputation, and our work ethos remain the same. The Domino Foundation will continue to rely on partnerships with private and corporate donors to effectively impact beneficiaries of its programmes.”

To play a part in the Domino Effect, go to www.domino.org.za and view the online video.

Or catch us on: Facebook 
and Twitter: @DominoRSA

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Student Social Workers at Indlela

Students making cupcakes

This term Indlela has had the privilege of helping 2 social work students complete their honours at the schools on our INDLELA Learning for Life programme.

Natalie Ogden sheds some light on her experiences, as she spent time at Amaoti 3 combined school, helping and assisting the girls to overcome certain obstacles and situations, while gaining a valuable understanding of life in a community and even herself.

My first day at Amaoti 3 School was very eye-opening. As a student social worker you are expected to do pre-group interviews and select a handful of pupils which you feel will benefit from group work counselling. After my first day I felt overwhelmed by the magnitude of needs that these pupils have. It was decided that I would work with the female grade 11 pupils who have a high pregnancy rate at the school. As a student social worker you are left with so many value dilemma’s in realising that a whole generation of children are faced with the harsh reality of teenage pregnancy and other youth related decisions. So many of the pupils are orphans, have more than one child and some were pregnant at the time of the interviews. How do you decide who should benefit from a 12 week counselling group workshop and who does not…. The need is so overwhelming, but we serve a God that knows each and every one of these girls and after three weeks of interviews, I selected my 9 girls and we began the process.

Students participating in Natalie’s counselling workshop

Social work for those of you that don’t know, is more than counselling and trying to fix perceived problems. As a student you are learning about yourself, about how organisations work and in my case…how group work actually happens in reality.  Here is this young, white female in the middle of the Amaoti community thinking that she can make a difference and realises that social work is more about getting down on your knees and digging in the dirt looking for diamonds that others can’t see. The world sees a generation of pregnant teenagers… I see a generation of woman who need to learn to shine and be who God called them to be.

I walked away on the 1st June 2012 having done our last session, there were mixed emotions of happiness in seeing how much the girls had grown and the strength they gathered from one another through support and trust. I was also sad at knowing that I had done what I had come to do, that I needed to trust in the seeds that were planted and that the students had the ability to be the difference they spoke about in the sessions.

There is a generation of children in the community of Amaoti who are orphans and many are facing hardship and indescribable pain… But they are strong, they are survivors and I know that with an organisation like Indlela who is prepared to dig in the dirt and make a difference… This generation is one that will not be left behind. Thank you Indlela staff for showing me that social work is in the heart and that a community is stronger than any perceived need. Together we can make a difference and you don’t need to be a social worker to get dirty and make a difference.

UNISA Social Work Students: Hlengiwe Thusi & Natalie Ogden

Farewell Party treats as the girls decorate cupcakes to show their lives and what they have learnt

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CURVES: Food Drive 2012

Over the past few years CURVES Durban North has proved to be a stalwart supporter of local NPO Indlela’s feeding programme, using imaginative initiatives to collect impressive stocks of non-perishable foodstuffs which are then distributed to the needy in the community. This year, however, the ladies really upped the ante and dreamed up a scheme that enabled the participants to amass large amounts of donated food while losing mass: a food-drive fun walk!

The Colourful Teams at the Fun Walk

At 10h30 on a beautiful Saturday morning in March five teams of enthusiastic ladies, decked out in an array of eye-catching themed outfits, gathered on the DHS Old Boys’ Club field to kick off the 2012 CURVES charity challenge. Their mission was to walk as many laps of the field as possible in one hour, each participant passing the baton – a bouncing bunch of colourful balloons – to the next team member after every completed lap. Sounds simple? Well, it was a FUN walk and there were a few extra CURVE balls thrown in to add spectator value to the event. Bonus points were awarded to team members who were first to reach their partners and hand over certain mandatory fashion accessories, such as silly glasses and hats. Then there were the ‘activity heats’, which required the team members currently on the field to complete their lap walking backwards, or sideways, or dancing and hopping! And there was no sitting around for those team members on the side-lines; bonus points were awarded for team-spirit and the volume of their war-cries, as well as for their outrageous outfits. The morning’s marvellous mayhem ended with a touch of manic madness when all five teams competed in a three-legged race.After the final points tally, the PINK SMURFS emerged the victors but in fact every participant was a winner as each lady had added to the growing pile of sponsored food with every lap she completed.

The staff of CURVES Durban North handed over a hefty 1 820kg of non-perishable food stuffs to representatives of Durban North-based NGO, Indlela, which will be packed into food parcels and distributed throughout the local community over the next few months. In today’s uncertain economic climate there are a number of families who are in need of a helping hand and Indlela aims to walk alongside them, providing practical assistance in the form of food parcels until they are back on their feet financially.

For the past few years the month of March has seen a frenzy of activity at CURVES Durban North as staff and members move into top gear to collect non-perishable food items to donate to Indlela’s feeding programme. Once again, CURVES International generously waived the standard joining fee for new members throughout March, requesting instead a bag full of groceries for the collection.

If you are interested in partnering with Indlela to help our community, visit the website at www.indlela.org or follow us on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Indlela/145965385440614

CURVES Food Donation.From left to right:
Back row: Dez Heathcote, Tammy Harris, Linde Lategan, Mickey Wilkins (Indlela), Shaun Tait (Indlela)
Front row: Sinaé Alberts, Mark Blond (Indlela), Clement Msomi (Indlela), Emmanuel Ndlovu (Indlela), Sifiso Luthuli (Indlela)

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Response to Weekend Shoot-Out

This morning’s article in the Mercury (link: http://www.iol.co.za/mercury/police-shoot-11-dead-1.1263376 ) makes us aware of the reality that the community of Amaoti, face each and everyday.

Speaking to our youth workers, they explained to us, their side of the story, of the events that unfolded this weekend.

Late on Friday night, a neighbour of one of our Youth Workers, was gunned down and robed outside his home. The group of criminals then went to a tavern and held the store up at gun point. Obviously an altercation occurred which lead to the group killing the workers and stealing alcohol and money, before fleeing the scene. On Saturday, the police arrived and tracked down the group of criminals to a place were they were staying in Inanda. When the police arrived, the group opened fire and the cops retaliated by returning shots to defend themselves. A massive shoot-out proceeded, leaving the 7 criminals dead.

The community’s response?

For months now, the same group of criminals have been causing chaos in and around Amaoti, robbing and mugging community members, leaving them scared and fearing for their lives. Friday and Saturdays events proved that the criminals were a danger to the rest of the Amaoti community. Justice needed to be served, but unfortunately the group was killed in the process. Although the desired outcome was not achieved peacefully, the community are happy that the group is no longer terrorising the area.

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Bright Beginnings for Back2School!

Traditional zulu dances in celebration

The children at an Amaoti  crèche had a bright start to the school year when Integra Scores, a BBBEE verification agency, threw them a party with all the delicious treats that children love as well as a generous donation of stationery to the value of R5 000.00. The children performed a Nativity Play and traditional Zulu songs and dances to express their appreciation – a fitting finale to a fun-filled occasion. And long after the taste of the party-fare has faded, these children will be enjoying the educational benefits of colouring-in books, paints, pencils, erasers, story-books, crayons, balls, play dough, and scissors – all the tools  needed to equip them for the challenges of ‘big school’.

Integra Scores approached Durban North-based NPO Indlela at the end of last year with a view fo throwing a Christmas party for children in the Amaoti community. As numerous parties had already been organised, it was suggested that they consider sponsoring a ‘Back2School’ party in the new year for a crèche that falls under Indlela’s ‘Bright Beginnings’ programme. Indlela’s crèche development programme is aimed at helping to prepare young children in needy communities for a brighter future through improved nutrition, early childhood education, and by upgrading the physical environment of the crèches.

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Party Babies!

The late Whitney Houston famously sang “I believe the children are our future” and if that is the case, given the plight of so many of South Africa’s children, we do not have much to look forward to.  Fortunately, however, the staff and volunteers at Fairhavens Babies’ Home and many other children’s shelters work tirelessly to ensure that the children in their care have the hope of a better and brighter future.

Children who live in care facilities are no different from children the world over – they love parties! However these fun-filled occasions, which are such a highlight of any child’s life, are all too often luxuries that many of these children have to forgo. Enter Kaveri from Kiddies WoW WoW Parties, who was inspired to throw a themed party for orphaned children.  She had the bright idea of using Facebook to publicise her plan, proving that social networks can play a positive part in our community. Within minutes of uploading her post:  “WoW WoW Parties wants to plan a kids’ PARTY for ORPHANS – an orphanage in the greater DURBAN area with limited resources and exposure would be ideal”, numerous supporters expressed their interest and party plans began to take shape.   Wow Wow Parties posted monthly updates to keep their supporters informed and the end result was that in December 2011, 25 families gathered at Fairhavens to throw a party that the children will never forget.  WoW WoW Parties spared no effort or expense to give the Fairhavens babies and toddlers the full VIP treatment and with imaginative party décor, colourful balloons, fancy cupcakes, gifts, jumping castles, and even children’s rides, the residents of Fairhavens had an unforgettable day.

It was also a special celebration as two of Fairhavens’ babies were adopted in December. Baby P arrived at Fairhavens as a prem baby, having been given up for adoption by her mother. She lived at Fairhavens for about a year before moving on to complete a special family. Baby S was found wandering around a shopping centre, having been abandoned by her mother. She arrived at Fairhavens about 10 months ago and will celebrate her third birthday with her new family here in South Africa.  The WoW WoW party added to an already momentous occasion and these special children got a memorable send-off, thanks to the people from WoW WoW Parties.

Fairhavens is always in need of the kindness of generous hearts like the folk from Wow Wow Parties, particularly in the form of financial contributions. If you would like to help in any way please contact us at (031) 563 9605 or go visit our website at www.indlela.org.za

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Holiday of Hope

For most of us, holidays play a prominent part in our childhood memories, familiar destinations for an enjoyable meander down memory lane. But there are many children who do not have the luxury of holidays and who will have no fond memories to recall in later years.

Last term, Indlela took members of the Amaoti 3 Girls’ Club to Hibberdene Children’s Holiday Home on KwaZulu-Natal’s South Coast for a memorable night away, for many their first experience of a holiday away from home. The Girl’s and Boys’ Clubs aim to provide pupils with constructive and creative after-school activities as a positive alternative to the risky behaviour that is common to unoccupied adolescents.

A bus packed with young girls, youth workers from Indlela’s Learning For Life programme, and staff set off from Amaoti to the accompaniment of singing, laughter and a buzz of excited conversation. On arriving at their destination, the girls were allocated beds and divided into teams. A programme of fun team-building activities kicked-off with some of the girls venturing into the ocean for the first time. The evening was spent watching movies, chatting and strengthening friendships. The next morning, the girls enjoyed a walk along the beautiful beach and a refreshing swim before tackling more team-building projects.

It wasn’t a five-star hotel in an exotic foreign location, but for some of the girls it offered the unusual luxury of having a bed to themselves, instead of having to share with at least one sibling. In accordance with Zulu culture, these young girls usually go home after school and start a round of household chores. For once, they were free from such responsibilities and encouraged to experience new and exciting activities. They certainly returned home with a fund of memories to remember fondly in weeks to come.

Girls Enjoying having their 'own' bed

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Winter Warmth Comes To Amaoti

Rotaract Members & Children at Zwakele School with new blankets

“As Rotaract Club of Durban we have worked closely with the Winter Warmth project run by ECR, Hub and Rotary in previous years. So when applications were due for this year’s allocation of blankets – we did not hesitate to apply. We were allocated 400 blankets of which we have used as numerous charities. We believe in truly searching for those who are in dire situations.”

This is when the Rotaract Club of Durban decided to team up with Durban north based NPO, Indlela. Through the Learning For Life programme, a HIV/AIDS prevention programme, a number of Learners have been identified as OVC (Orphaned and Vulnerable Children). Being orphaned and vulnerable, these children either have no parents, are living in child headed households or with gogo’s or neighbours. Being a cold winter, Indlela and The Rotaract Club of Durban, stepped in to assist these children in need, distributing blankets to the Children at Zwakele Primary, in Amaoti.

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