Effective Local Charity Work: Tshepo Hope

Posted by Martin Keat

The reason why BSTrust really works and helps to bring about lasting impact is that we partner with grass root organisations to produce the most effective charity work we can at a local level.  When Governements try to implement plans for social change, they are often misinformed or guided by the population as a whole or worse, monetory constraints, and don't truely know the heart of the people or what their changing needs are.  They try to change communities and behaviours by introducing new policies which don't get to the real heart of the problems. 

But the great thing about our partners in South Africa is that they work within the communities they serve.  They listen to the people they work with.  They adapt their programmes to meet the current needs within the communities and change the way they work in order to best serve those they work with.  They don't stand still, but monitor whether their charity work is effective in bringing about changes within the local community -  that are improving lives and empowering individuals to strive to be the very best. 

So lets take a moment to look at one of our Flagship programmes: Tshepo Hope Safe Park to find out how effective their charity work is in meeting the needs of the community it serves and excatly what it is which makes it so good. 


Tshepo Hope in Tsakane was set up in 1997 when it saw the challenges the local community were facing in the midst of the impact of HIV/AIDS.  It knew that in order to be an effective charity, it needed to provide for the growing needs of the community and educate people living with HIV/AIDS and those impacted by their family members living with HIV/AIDS.  Initially set up by volunteers, Tshepo Hope was realising the dramatic impact the HIV/AIDS virus was having within the community; many parents were dying and thousands of children were being left orphaned and vulnerable. These children were destitute with no one to look after them.  Similarly, volunteers were experiencing challenges when visiting people in their homes as people living with HIV/AIDS were unable to care for themselves or those under their care; leaving many people (especially young vulnerable children) extremely neglected and malnourished.  Tshepo Hope realised that visiting people in their homes was not enough and they needed to bring the young children to a place of saftey where they would be cared for, educated, fed and allowed to flourish.  Tshepo Hope charity now has an effective programme meeting the changing needs of the local community - providing care in peoples homes, after school, preschool education, feeding programmes and support groups.  It is a highly successful and effective Safe Park programme because it:

Trains local people

Volunteers from the community train to become Home Based Carers, who visit people in their homes taking food, medicine, care and education.

Works with People in the know

Who are the best people to work with the Orphaned and Vulnerable children?  Those who have been there themselves.  We train Peer Educators, aged between 14-18yrs to help those who are younger than themselves to keep looking up and not down.  Using interactive drama techniques, these PE help the younger children to face their difficulties, talk about their emotions in a safe environment and build their self esteem.

Adapts to the needs within the local community

Thespo Hope is ever growing and has just moved to a new location where it can provide a greater space for the preschool children to come and learn in an environment which is safe and secure.  The new land has provided more outside space for the children to play and there is a brand new food garden and food tunnel which is 'growing its own' to make the programme self sufficient.

Empowers everyone to reach their potential

One of the major problems facing the community is the growing number of Grannies who are looking after their grandchildren when the parents have died.  The Grannies programmes is effective in keeping the Grannies healthy and financially independent.  The programmes provide exercise and education for the Grannies and gives them the chance to chat about their problems over a hot meal.  Many of the Grannies also help the feeding programme of the preschool and after school club and are the cooks for the 300+ children who come along every day for meals and homework help.  Some of our Safe Parks are starting Social Enterprises with the Grannies where they are building sewing businesses and poultry businesses. 

Listens to those around

Childcare Advocates work in the homes of the orphaned and vulnerable children to help ensure they are ok and check on questions such as: Is there someone to look after the young children?  Are they getting to school everyday - if not, what is stopping them?  Is there enough food in the house?  Do they know how to look after themselves properly?  Are they getting everything they are entitled to from the Governement?  Childcare Advocares, like Emmah, listen and care for the orphaned and vulnerable.  She is a voice for these children when no one else is there to speak up for them. 

This is a really great programme working within the community, for the community.  One of its outreach programmes also featured on this years Great British Bake Off.  You can donate now to the work of Tshepo Hope and our Orphans and Vulnerable children's programme to help it reach its vision to empower everyone it works with to develop to be the very best.  




Go Back

A big part of our work here at the Bishop Simeon trust is committed to assuring that children and young adults in South Africa are able to challenge and conquer those obstacles in their lives that prevent them from accessing education and assuring that they can  make the most of the potential they possess to thrive and build a positive future.