The third term was a hectic and momentous one for us. Two of our boys were admitted to Greys Hospital for corrective surgery on their legs with a hope that they might be able to walk someday. They returned from hospital with their legs covered in POP and this alone was a huge and scary place for them to be, as well as the whole experience of the hospital stay and the operation. They are typical rural lads and have never ever known anything like this. The weeks and months following the operations was also hard and confusing with the constant pushing and encouraging to do their exercises. It continues to be long road ahead for them but we have seen improvement and so we are all encouraged. Of course, without Phillipa, our physiotherapist friend we would have been very much out of our depths.
This is Andile not a happy chappy on his way back from hospital but here is Sqe much happier once the plaster was off again.
In August we also hosted our AGM and here is our chairmans report which gives you all a good overview of the past year.
Chairman’s Report : Hlanganani Ngothando Organisation 2016/17
We can again praise our Lord Jesus Christ for His support and blessing on us and the community around us this year. We are very aware of His love and deep concern for His people especially those marginalized and often disregarded. God blessed us with the ability to respond to needs in our community in many ways some ongoing and some new. Hlanganani Ngothando’s outreach work falls under three main categories.
- Therapy and support for children and young adults living with disabilities here at the centre in Bulwer: currently we have 33 clients registered who receive assistance from us. 10 boys and 2 girls are weekly boarders, 9 of the boarders attend the Pholela Special School and 22 children are transported daily to the centre for therapy.
- Community assistance in the areas surrounding Bulwer which includes personal assistance, and counselling for individuals and families, and a feeding scheme for about 38 to 40 destitute families. We have assisted more than 160 families this year one way or another; a truly community blessing!
- Counselling and emotional and spiritual support for Prisoners at 5 prisons in Pietermaritzburg as well as schools and clinics. Counselling and instruction in Jesus Life skills by Eric Ntuli has been extensive.
We employ in total, 20 people because of the intensive nature of the therapy for the disabled. Providing employment is therefore also a very large part of the service this organisation offers the community. Three members of MANCO are volunteers. We run three vehicles and 4 of our employees have driver’s licenses with PDP. At the centre Mary and her helpers have done sterling work boosting the abilities and confidence of our children. There has been steady progress in each child and their smiles and joy are heart-warming. We even had our own Christmas pageant this season. Since the opening of our residential facility in 2015 we have increased from the original 4 boys until we now assist 12 teenagers and young adults with this service. God has provided us with wonderful mothers and encouragers for them who take care of the boarders, with Nokwazi Ndlovu as the house mother in charge. Each child who has arrived here came with issues or problems, such as extreme shyness, problems with personal care, withdrawn, or aggressive behaviour. We can report with joy that in every case there has been a huge improvement and the atmosphere of peacefulness and co-operation and fun is a wonderful testimony to the love and care they are receiving from the staff who live here with the children during the week. Nokwazi, Cynthea, Florence and Gladwin. This venture has been a huge success although the increased costs have been seriously daunting. However God has again provided. Our old and very faithful friends from Germany from an organisation called Hilfe fur Esinqobile, run by Martin Stuka and Armin Winkler on behalf of several people who not only sponsor individual children but always seem to be able to send a substantial amount extra towards our general funds, have continued to be one of the mainstays of support for HNO. Because of their generosity we have been able to more comfortably extend our service to include boarders.
Clare and Marc Barton from Britain have also supported once again despite their very busy schedules and working doctors and busy parents to a young family.
A very special group of people from Boise Idaho in America have taken our assistance with community needs to heart. They have sent funds to Sihlangu Childrens Centre for food for the children who reside there and HNO has administered these funds on their behalf. Five of those children attend HNO on a daily basis. Boise have also supported the Vulnerable feeding scheme generously every month and make a contribution to our fuel costs, which as you can imagine is very high every month. We had a wonderful visit from them this year as they got stuck into playing with our children doing crafts and even exercises with them and then painting Sihlangu childrens Centre. They also visited a few homes in the community and from that came the pledge to support one family with a new roof for their home.
Dennis Weston, a very special and personal friend has over the years faithfully and quietly raised money for our cause.
We continue to be grateful to the organisers of the SANI2c bike ride and our ladies who volunteer to cater for them at McKenzie Club stop. This has been a wonderful cash support boost for our funds. The Department of Mental Health have supported willingly. We especially appreciate Zah Shabalala who is our co-ordinator with them, who has done so much to help us keep on the map! Also the local Department of Health hospital staff have been assisting with Diet, and occupational therapy! Phillipa Spooner, a retired physiotherapist comes from PMB regularly and volunteers her amazing services. On top of this we continue to receive wonderful resources from groups like the Cathedral women and the Wesley Methodist ladies ,Lil McNeil and her knitting friends, Jill and the Loaves and Fishes sewing group from Grace Church , the Creighton Community church and many local volunteers and supporters. Without the regular support from Container Ministries in the form of soup mixes, blankets, mealie meal etc our food parcels would be much smaller. But we will never forget each and every one of the individual donors who enable us to balance our budget once again!
A very special thank you must go to Buzz Speirs who has done so much at the centre to make it safe for the children and to keep the buildings and infrastructure in excellent order. He put up a header tank so we are not so dependent on electricity for our water supply! He has also sold us his Izusu vehicle at a very reasonable price.
The presence of Eric Ntuli and his family on the premises and his vision has brought good news to the schools and community around us. We need to help re-establish community values and hope so we can live in peace and joy as we were created to do!
Gladwin has been added to our staff and has been a real blessing!
I want to thank God for the wonderful personnel He has put together to care for the persons in our expanding area. From Financial manager to centre manager to therapy manager to the carers and to those in charge of outreach and home care! Each one is called by God to bring their very special gifts to work in this part of God’s Kingdom!
Chairman: H N O