Running a successful upliftment project is not easy, as it requires more than just work and dedication.
Mama Dorah Semenya, assisted by Clover Mama Afrika, runs the Shalate drop-in centre in Seshego, Polokwane. Semenya’s centre is a safe haven for children, having started caring for 6 orphans and 3 vulnerable children, the centre now provides for 120.
Mama Dorah advises, “If you want to become involved in helping your community you need to be patient and constantly listen to what your community needs. Do research before you even start and look for support where you can.”
Living in Seshego, Semenya always noticed how many children were left unattended and the high amount of teen pregnancy as well as poverty. Her centre has been able to help her community for the last nine years.
Mama Dorah provides four tips to help make upliftment programme’s a success:
“You need the right personality and attitude to start an upliftment programme. You need to have the passion to care for others and the willingness to help people in need, no matter what obstacles come your way. Once you commit to helping your community, you commit to helping people that rely on you, so you can’t just give up when you feel you can’t do it anymore. A strong mind and dedication is a must,” says Semenya.
“You can’t start a project on your own. You need help from others that can support you in different ways, the more support you have the more you are able to help others in need,” says Se
- Transferring skills
“For your upliftment programme to be a success it is important to transfer your skills to the people in your community so they able to become self-sustainable and then further help others,” says Semenya.
- A great leader
“If you want to help and empower others it’s important for your community to listen to and understand you and this means you need to be a great leader. To be a great leader means you need to invest in your programme and actively participate in the development and growth of the project”, says Semenya.