Karabo Asara Orphan Centre
The Karabo Asara HIV & Orphan Center started due to an increasing number of orphaned children and HIV effected and affected people living in poverty with minimum or no access to information about the pandemic. As a result, the community of New Eesterus, located in the heart of Soshanguve - Pretoria's largest township, decided to do something about the situation.
Karabo Asara formed in 2008 with the help of one woman (Heidi O'Bra) and has been informally operating ever since. Granted, the HIV & Orphan Center is in desperate need of funds in order to continue their operations.
The main objectives of the organization are to:
1) Give support to child-headed homes
2) Give shelter and comfort to vulnerable children
3) Take care of children effected and affected by HIV/AIDS
4) To encourage young people on issues of moral degradation and constructive behavior through sports and motivation
5) To help keep children off the streets
6) To save children from abusive environments, and to provide a safe space for children to play and interact
It's secondary objectives are to:
1) Help weak and elderly people in the community who are left alone to care for young children;
2) To form a support group for HIV+ people in the community
3) To start a community garden to help feed the people of Soshanguve
4) To introduce projects that are sustainable that can add value and empower people of the community (i.e., small business, skills development, computer literacy, arts & crafts, etc.)
Karabo Asara has already achieved remarkable results:
* Feeding scheme for children and for HIV+ persons who are on antiretroviral therapy who need to maintain a good diet
* Donate clothing to children in need, and provide laundry services to promote good hygiene
*The center takes interest in the children's academic success, and helps provide school uniforms and assists with their homework
*Started an HIV support group with members of the community, including workshops, moral support, and encourages others to know their HIV status
*Door-to-door home based care for the sick and elderly that stay alone during the day - volunteers go and help with cleaning, taking a bath, and providing food
Up until now, all workers and caregivers have been volunteers from the community. As we move forward, we would like to begin paying these critical members of society a small stipend for their help.
The Karabo Asara Orphan and HIV Center also provides meals for children and community members, which is a major expense.
We need your help to ensure long-term sustainability of this amazing organization. We are in the process of exploring ways for the South African Government to recognize Karabo Asara as a Non-Profit Organization and to receive support locally, but this will take time.
Karabo Asara's monthly expenses are approximately $1000 (including food, a very small stipend, water, electricty, transportation fees, etc).
We would like to generate enough money to sustain Karabo Asara over the next year while we build the organization's capacity and get them to the level where they will qualify for national support.
Please do what you can to help.
And if you're in South Africa, we are always looking for donations of food, clothing, books and blankets. And let me know if you'd like to volunteer and help at Karabo Asara Orphan and HIV Center!
All the best,
We held our annual Karabo Asara Christmas Braai Celebration yesterday and it was a huge success! As such, I wanted to take a moment to thank everyone who donated money, time and gifts-in-kind to this wonderful community in Shoshanguve.
The day was filled with joyous singing, dancing and eating...with lots of laughter, hugs and smiles all around.
Each child received a personalized wrapped gift, the caregivers were given Christmas bonuses and everyone feasted on pap, boerewors, chicken and chops!
Here's a link to ALL the photos...
And please continue to think of us in this part of the world - where the needs are great, yet resources are scarce.
Enjoy the holidays!
Amy & Darren
We are in desperate need of school supplies, school uniforms and soccer/football equipment for the children of Shoshanguve!
We'd also like to raise money to purchase food for the center (as they prepare two meals a day for the 100+ children); and we'd like to say 'thank you' to the volunteer caregivers - who donate their time, day after day, to the most vulnerable children in the community.
The event will take place on November 18th...
Thanks again for all your support over the years! We are all so grateful at Karabo Asara.
All the best,
Amy & Darren
We are making improvements to the facility, slowly but surely! We just replaced the stove and continue to build a secure wall around the perimeter.
We are gearing up towards our annual Christmas celebration! We are looking to fund school uniforms, shoes and school supplies for the children of Karabo Asara. Please do what you can to help.
And if you're in the vicinity, mark your calendar for November 18th - our Christmas braai and gathering...
Please help us spread the word!
I wanted to provide a very quick update as to what's happening at Karabo Asara. The dedicated caregivers continue to support approximately one hundred vulnerable children each and every day! They prepare two hot meals per day and provide a safe, supportive environment for children to do homework, to play, or to simply hang out.
Over the years, we've formed a special relationship with the dancers at Karabo Asara (many of the dancers have grown up in Karabo Asara, as the center has been operational for more than ten years).
We wanted to do something extra special for this talented group of performers, who are trying to position themselves as a professional dance troupe as a means of earning money.
So with this last round of donations, we set aside money to purchase drums for the group! Maria and I just picked up these beautiful drums this afternoon (pictured below).
We are holding our next big event on Saturday, May 12th, where we will deliver the drums to the dancers and host a community braai.
Thanks again for all your support over the years. You have kept this tiny center operational! Through your kindness and generosity, this community continues to shine.
Please do what you can to help us continue this path.
All the best,