Orphans and Vulnerable Children- Circle of Support

The Children’s Circle of support in Zwelihle is a community based project that is administered by Hermanus Rainbow Trust. It currently supports 30 children, orphaned by the AIDS pandemic. These children range in age from 2 to 14 years.

Most black South Africans that live in townships like Zwelihle live by “Ubuntu”. This effectively means “we look after our own”. In this case, when parents die and leave young children, the community takes care of them. Some are living with grandparents, some with older siblings, and others with their neighbours. The extra financial and emotional burden on the new “Family units” is considerable.

The circle of support provides breakfast and a cooked lunch each day for the children as well as after care facility where the children may play in safety and where they are encouraged to remember and talk about their late parents - a counsellor is available for them. The also have their anti retroviral drugs given to them and are regularly brought to the nearby clinic for check ups and tests.

In Zwelihle, there are over 300 children orphaned by AIDS and that numbers grows daily.  Their basic needs include food, provision of school uniforms and shoes, school fees and books and continuous care for the younger children. Many of these children are HIV positive, so they also need a caregiver to ensure that they get their daily anti retroviral drugs.

Orphans Care Update:

The people of the Sacred Heart Parish have sponsored the total care of FOUR children that have been orphaned due to AIDS.
This sponsorship provides them with hot meals before and after school as well as their clothing and school requirements. Their carers at the centre also give them their daily anti retroviral drugs and bring them for regular medical check-ups to the Zwelihle clinic.