Welverdiend Community, South Africa
150 children like Siyabonga* have daily experienced the love of Christ through a group of 15 dedicated volunteer Care Workers in the community of Welverdiend since 2009. These Care Workers not only understand the necessity of access to lifesaving services such as basic heath care, education and food security; they see the deep need for each child to know their Heavenly Father.
The Care Workers understand the brokenness and need in their community: unemployment, alcoholism, crime and sexual abuse. Many in the community of Welverdiend are deeply influenced by cultural traditions and traditional healers, which creates high levels of suspicion and mistrust among the families of the vulnerable. Under the strong leadership of Thembe, the Primary Caregivers for the most vulnerable children experienced Maranatha Workshops, which have produced life changing and community changing results.
Since these Maranatha Workshops, Primary Caregivers are now meeting monthly in their Relationship Groups, but they desire to connect more often. The local office sees these groups as such a success that they have invited them to visit other communities in the area to inspire them and testify to the support and transformation that can come by meeting together.
The youth are now meeting each Friday for a Bible study facilitated by Siyabonga. The young moms have begun to join in as well, and the local office is looking to start a program with them. The Care Workers meet each week and are doing well. They have grown in their capacity and ownership of Relationship Groups, and as the months go on require less and less input from the local office. The community of Welverdiend has embraced the power of meeting together with their brothers and sisters in Christ, sharing their burdens and celebrating their successes.
On October 1, the number of children being cared for by the Care Workers at Pfunani Community Based Organisation (CBO) in Welverdiend increased from 100 to 150. Please stand with us in prayer for the community of Welverdiend as they continue to serve the most vulnerable.
Siyabonga is 16 years old and an emerging leader in the community of Welverdiend. He lives with his grandmother. Despite her best efforts she struggles to care for his basic needs. Siyabonga is a great help to the Care Workers. He encourages the younger children and helps them with their homework. The love and commitment displayed by Siyabonga for his community is a shining example of local community ownership, one which he could not have achieved without the example of the Care Workers at Pfunani CBO.
*name has been changed