NGO finds solutions, together

2016-07-12 06:05
 Photo: supplied The Kwadabeka Bapist Church.

Photo: supplied The Kwadabeka Bapist Church.

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THE Church Alliance for Social Transformation (CAST) is a registered NGO that mobilises and equips churches with compassionate action among the poor.
CAST works in the KwaDabeka community, in partnership with KwaDabeka Baptist Church and Sithokozile Secondary School.

CAST spokesperson Laura Mbugua-Mwaura said: “KwaDabeka is on the edge of New Germany, where poverty is rampant. We work with many households where the bread winners are too sick to work, or simply lack the skills to be employed.
“The predominant problems in this community are poverty, HIV/Aids, unemployment, lack of economic opportunity, crime, drug abuse, domestic violence and rape.

“Our programmes include a food parcel project named Hearts to Hands. We work towards uplifting poorer communities and facilitating the journey of restoration from hopelessness and despair to faith, dignity and self-worth.
“We start by meeting the most urgent needs by offering relief services specifically in the area of monthly food parcels and providing clothing and blankets.
“Households are assessed by CAST community workers who work with schools, clinics and churches in the communities.”

CAST’s Youth Development initiative includes sports programmes which are basketball, soccer and tennis coaching.
“To combat issues such as HIV and Aids, drug abuse, lack of education, and poverty, CAST’s sports programme focuses on whole life coaching. Coaches use the Ubabalo eAfrica programme, which recognises the emotional, intellectual, social, environmental, spiritual and physical needs of youth. Coaches take sport skills and make a life skill application through Bible study.

“We believe one-on-one mentoring is the answer to many of these community problems.
“Youth who participate in our sports programmes need individual attention from an older mentor who can pour into their lives on a consistent, long-term basis.
“By encouraging education and providing meaningful relationship with older mentors, we strive to empower youth to avoid whoonga, crime, and irresponsible sexual behaviour.

CAST has also developed a maths and science tutoring programme with volunteers and university students from Westville and KwaDabeka.
They tutor high-school pupils from KwaDabeka who are in the CAST Youth Development programme.

“Our business forum members gather weekly at our business forum in KwaDabeka to learn how to run a business, or grow the businesses they already have. We use the paradigm shift curriculum for basic business training. After completing the course group members meet weekly for networking and ongoing inspiration and training.

“Training topics include registering a business, marketing successfully, submitting tenders, managing and cash flow. When we started the first forum we discovered that the majority of people running these small businesses did not even have a basic concept of how to calculate profit, manage cash flow or develop a business plan.”
For more information, phone 031 267 1716 or email - Supplied.

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