House of hope House of hope

2015-08-04 06:01
Dorris Xulu, Sonia Swinton and Lynne Pieterse with some of the babies they care for.
Photo: supplied

Dorris Xulu, Sonia Swinton and Lynne Pieterse with some of the babies they care for. Photo: supplied

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Blurb: ‘She always leaves a piece of her heart with every person she comes into contact with’

Contact Hope House on 072 374 9563 or e-mail

HAPPY faces full of love and excitement receive visitors as they walk into Hope House, a safe haven and foster home for abandoned babies in the Highway area.

Co-founded in 2007, the non-profit Christian home is run by long-time friends 60-year-old Sonia Swinton (certified child carer) and 62-year-old Lynne Pieterse who care for abandoned babies - from newborns to toddlers - until they find adoptions for the little ones.

The duo started this initiative as part of the Pinetown Presbyterian Church’s New Hope Ministries, with the intention of giving mothers who cannot care for their babies other options rather than to abort or abandon them.

Hope House also helps mothers who are unable to care for their babies at the time, by giving them a chance to get back on their feet. If the mother’s circumstances become stable again, the child can then be returned to her.

Babies who have been given up for adoption are also placed here while in transit.

For Swinton and Pieterse, it is a dream come true to be able to give back to the community in this way.

“It was a dream of mine to always be surrounded by children and look after the ones in need. And with Hope House, God has provided me with the opportunity to do just that,” explained Swinton.

She said this initiative started sometime back after she lost her job and decided to turn her passion for children into a charitable cause.

“We put in an offer for a house and got involved with our local church which referred children to us,” she said.

To date Hope House has seen over 31 children being adopted in a loving home.

Pieterse said it is humbling to care for the children who are so willing to show them love.

and#034;It’s not about what you give the children, but what you get back from them. It’s so rewarding to see them develop.

“When we see their smile or laugh it just makes it all worthwhile.”

She said although she becomes attached to the little ones, it is a bitter sweet feeling when the child is adopted and moves away.

“My heart cries out for them, but I know they will be going to a family that will love and cherish them the way we do.”

The remarkable women said that although they run the home selflessly, they are in need of assistance to continue caring for the children.

“Due to ever-rising prices and limited income we are appealing for any goodies that could help assist with running the home,” said Pieterse.

and#034;Some of our immediate needs include nappies, formula, medicine and financial assistance is always welcome.”

They duo also appealed to the community to volunteer their services at Hope House.

“If people have time on their hands and love to give, then Hope House welcomes you. We are always in need of assistance to take care of the little ones.”

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