In the middle of April we ventured into a new area to distribute blankets and were very excited as we set off to Finetown, an informal settlement south of Johannesburg!  The Pastor who runs the Day Care Centre we were visiting met us on the side of the road to show us where to go and it was just as well because we would never have found the secluded little shack that houses the Emmanuel’s Day Care Centre. 

 No. 198 – Emmanuel’s Day Care Centre

The area was very quiet (we can normally hear the children laughing and playing when we arrive) and Phillip invited us inside.  In a small room, blocked off by hanging pieces of fabric were around 25 very lethargic and sick little children – we were heart-broken to say the least.  It was difficult to know whether the children were terrified by the sight of Wandi, Wendy and I (my snow white hair does sometimes scare them a little!) or just unwell and unable to show any interest.

We handed out your lovely colourful blankets and warm tops to this obviously sad group of little ones.


We also tried very hard to get them to cheer up and smile by playing with them, singing songs and cuddling but not even the toys we handed out could really raise a smile…


When we arrived at the Day Care Centre, this little boy was on the potty in a cordoned off area next door.  After he finished he came through and just lay on the floor and was asleep within seconds.  We picked him up and put him on the warm blankets.


The shack that the children are currently being cared for in is appalling, but Pastor Phillip does have plans to help the children and he has acquired a piece of property across the road on which he is developing what will be the new Emmanuel’s Day Care Centre.  We only hope that he is able to finish this facility soon and move the children into a safer and healthier environment.

 It is evident that Pastor Phillip cares dearly for these children – this is the site of the new Emmanuel’s Day Care!


This is what the children currently call their playground – hopefully in the new premises Pastor Phillip is able to create a warm and cheerful environment in which these children can learn and be loved.

 As we were leaving, Wendy turned back and took this photo – it gives you a good idea of the dismal setting.

Since this visit to Finetown, and despite some incidents of protest action in the area shortly after our first visit, we have been to another five Day Care facilities in the area (we promise to report on each of them!!!).  None of the other Centres have been quite as heart breaking as Emmanuel’s Day Care Centre and we hope that by putting Phillip in touch with the right people, he will be able to achieve his dream of building a Day Care Centre he can be proud of.  We will also be putting Phillip in touch with an amazing organisation called JAM International and will get his children onto their feeding programme.  I will share more about JAM with you in our next report.




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  • Hi everyone,
    I came across this tonight and I was wondering if now that the KAS distributions are slowing if it'd be a good time to investigate helping this center more? Just a thought, back in June we had discussed possibly fundraising for them like the Nancefield day care center (to a lesser scale).
    • I came across Cherry's response a little while ago and am wondering what has happened to Finetown and if they actually are in touch with the agencies to help them with food, a new center, blankets, etc.  What is the status of the center? 

      • Ronda mentioned to me in a email discussion regarding the Food & Fruit that is taken to the children during distributions, that currently 162 children from creches/day centres flagged up by KAS are receiving JAM Porridge.  Unfortunately, I do not know the names of the places involved. However, be assured KAS is trying to get this nutritious porridge into as many of our places as possible!

        I'm sure we will hear more as Wendy & Ronda write up the Reports from South Africa and add the photographs. 

  • Thanks for sharing  the details about the condition around this country. It is quite heart rendering though. 

    • I wonder if KAS could devlop a 'kit' for a nursery which would include things like some basic toys, posters, pens, paper  mats, whatever THEY would find more useful. Then the standard kit could be handed out to particularly needy centres alongside the blankets... but yes wait until after the cold season. Its WONDERFUL to hear that 2 or more distribtions are being done daily

  • This is so heartbreaking.  Our warm items are a good effort that will help them.  I am so thankful you got Pastor Phillip in touch with JAM, because without food they will not be alive to use the items we send. 

     Is he the only one working there?  I did not see mention of any others.   I keep asking why I have been so blessed to have food, shelter, and all I need rather than to have been born one of these children or workers who face  such odds. 

    May the Lord of  heaven bless Pastor Phillip, an angel of mercy. 

    • I 100% agree Maureen and I've certainly prayed about it.  I do feel like I'm unreasonably blessed here in Canada, particularly when I go into a grocery or clothing store.  

  • Oh dear. Hopefully in a few months the children will be able to pull their blankets closely around them and snuggle and smile and remember the day the kind ladies came and handed them around. 

    • You said this so well Maudie exactly what I was hoping would happen and what we dream happens whenever we send off another parcel.

  • This Report from South Africa has certainly touched members hearts, and, obviously our first response is that 'we must do something!' being such good hearted people!

    However, please could I ask that we do not set anything in motion without consulting Wendy & Ronda - they are both extremely busy right now, with 2 or 3 distributions per day, on several days a week!  I know Wendy has some ideas up her sleeve, and, it is likely that the KasShop will be utilised more for appeals. In this way we can target items more specifically.

    One of Wendy's ideas is to have an appeal to purchase posters etc to brighten up the walls of day centres like Pastor Phillip's. KAS has put him in touch with other people who can help him with other material aspects of developing his day care centre.

    As you can see from recent postings, KAS is beginning to attract more attention in South Africa through the news media, and, Ronda's wonderful radio interview.  Also in the background, KAS is getting a number of special paperwork issues in place for the future, which will makes KAS more attractive for funders, especially corporate funding.

    If there is any further news on Pastor Phillip, we will certainly keep everyone informed!


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