A note from one of our donors…
Much is being done in Cape Town to help disadvantaged children and young adults. But so much more is needed.
When we were looking how best we could support this population, we didn’t know where we could begin to make a difference. In 2008 Michelle Potter identified a huge gap in support where disadvantaged young adults on leaving care simply had nothing and no-one to turn to. She set about helping to fill this gap by providing mentoring, coaching and support to them to help them prepare for a career through her charity, Off The Street Kids (OTSK).
We visited her last year and again in August 2010. What great progress in a year!
Not only was the mentoring programme in full swing with up to 20 mentees being enrolled, but training manuals for both mentors and mentees and a full set of procedures were in place. We were delighted to meet Amy, OTSK’s very organised and capable book keeper and fundraiser (and excellent gardener!) and to re-visit Marieke the social worker at Beth Uriel who is soon to join OTSK. Registration of the charity in South Africa under the name SIYAPHAMBILI was also almost complete with some high powered trustees on board. A 4 page article about OTSK in the South African Big Issue was impressive.
The best endorsement came from our visit to Heatherdale Children’s Home where Eddie, the very dynamic and personable manager, has fully embraced the OTSK mentoring model and has already got 2 of the youth in his care lined up for the scheme. Michelle has done a tremendous job over the past year and we have committed to continue to fund OTSK for the next 2 years.