The KwaMashu Family and Child Welfare Society (KFCWS) has officially taken ownership of its brand new premises, built at a cost of R10-million by the Sibaya Community Trust. The building houses offices, an aftercare and learning wing with a library and computer room, a kitchen and canteen, as well as large multipurpose hall. Vivian Reddy, Trustee of the Sibaya Community Trust, handed over the building to Mr R.V. Cele, the Chairman of KFCWS at a ceremony on 18 March 2019, attended by Her Worship the Mayor of EThekwini, Councillor Zandile Gumede, and other special guests.
“This special project has been two years in the making and we are delight to officially hand it over to such a deserving organisation. When we first received KwaMashu Family and Child Welfare Society’s (KFCWS) pleas for assistance, we were deeply heartened by the tremendous work they were doing in the community, despite very limited resources and from severely inadequate premises.
“A nonprofit organisation, KFCWS relies heavily on donations and support from the public and corporate sector in order to continue providing its much-needed services and support to the most vulnerable people in the community, young children. We are very pleased that we have been able to contribute towards easing some of the challenges they faced working from a constrained and ill-equipped space. The new environment is more comfortable and conducive for staff and those who come to the centre for help. It is a return on investment for us to know that the team will be able to better deliver their services and impact more lives,” says Reddy.
Previously, the nearly 41 members of staff worked from a small and cramped area. A shack, built by staff, provided some protection from the elements for visitors while staff had to make use of a small, secure office to access printers, files and other administration necessities. Though well kept, the tiny premises was inadequate for serving the burgeoning number of people needing its help in the disadvantaged communities of KwaMashu, Ntuzuma, Lindelani, Richmond Farm, Bester Siyanda and Qhakaza.
KFCWS has a distinguished 80-year heritage of serving smallest and most vulnerable members of any community, children aged 0 to 12 years. The organisation was established with the objective to safeguard and promote the interests and wellbeing as well as the rights of children. It has the support of the Department of Social Development in KZN, the SAPS and the local Ward Councillor. The team works closely with the community, using volunteers to identify vulnerable children as well as train and up-skill foster parents. Through its various programmes, Social Workers and Community Care Homes, KFCWS impacts over 13 300 people a year.
KFCWS is led by Doris Dube who worked for the organisation initially as a social worker and returned to lead the organisation. She leads a team of 57 including Social workers, ECD teachers, House mothers for the children’s homes and various programme champions in surrounding schools. The team is supported by a Deputy Director and Senior Supervisors of the different teams. Its board is chaired by Mr Cele.
Commenting on the new building, Cele said: “We are eternally grateful to Sibaya Community Trust for its generous support to bring this project to fruition. We are delighted to have such a beautiful, well equipped environment to work from, and more importantly, to receive and host the members of the community who seek help from us. We are now better placed to deliver our much needed services and programmes.”