When Home from Home was established 12 years ago, with our first home of six children in Khayelitsha, little did we know that we would grow to be caring for nearly 200 children in more than 30 homes across the Western Cape! At that stage most of our children were very young, with the youngest being just four years old. Twelve years later we find ourselves in the position where we are caring for 18 young people over the age of 15 and we are now dealing with issues and challenges specific to young adults. We realize we need to be fully prepared and equipped to handle them as this age group grows over the coming years, and the young people prepare to leave our care.
Our organisational focus for 2017 is developing a strategy on how we successfully manage this process – by implementing age appropriate programmes for each age group. For our older teens we are focusing activities on skills training, which will allow them to leave their homes when the time comes and join the world as independent adults. We plan to help them accomplish this by enrolling them in life skills workshops, providing career path guidance and assisting them to obtain ID’s or learners and drivers licenses.
We are also focusing on preparing our younger teens and ‘tweens’ for possible challenges they might encounter, involving: gender and sexuality, substance abuse, identity and building self-esteem and positive decision making. But overall, we’re striving to guide all our children at every stage of their lives so they may one day leave our homes with a strong foundation on which to grow.