Children’s homes suffer as donors cut funding

2009-11-09 00:00

NUMEROUS children’s homes in the city are struggling in the grip of the recession as most donors cut their funding.

The homes that have found themselves under severe financial strain include the Pietermaritzburg Children’s Home, the SOS Children’s Home in Grange, the Khayalethu Children’s Shelter and the Natal Children’s Home.

Linda Hofmeyr, the new general manager of Pietermaritzburg Children’s Home, said many of the children living at the home face a bleak Christmas while the home continues to struggle with its finances as it is experiencing a shortfall of funds running into thousands of rand per month.

“Earlier this year we even thought of cutting back on some of the staff members as it was difficult to pay them. However, we decided not to compromise on the [care for the] children.”

She said because of the recession, the donations, which are their biggest source of income, have dried up as the people are cutting back on their expenses.

“Previously, you had people donating R500 per month. Now you are lucky to receive R100.”

She appealed to the community to assist the home, which houses at least 70 children, not just in monetary terms but also with anything of value that they can donate.

“This could be a bleak Christmas for the many children here and we hope the public can assist to improve the situation.”

Hofmeyr also appealed to local businesses to donate fencing material as the home is also facing security concerns.

Thulani Nzimande, the project co-coordinator at the Khayalethu Children Shelter, said they too are feeling the recessionary pressure. He said some of the children at the home are even struggling to pay their school fees.

Weekend Ngubane, the director of the SOS Children’s Home located in Grange, said although they have not been as severely affected as other homes, they have felt the economic turmoil.


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