There are many different charities in and around South Africa. And, pretty much all of them are worth investigating and becoming involved with. Many local charities struggle with funding and are frequently trying to find financial support or sponsorship. But in the current South African economic climate, finding funding is an enormous challenge. Individual South Africans are constantly urged to give more but most are living hand to mouth with increasing debt because the cost of living is on a constant rise.


What you can find though, is many South Africans willing to do more as opposed to pay more. Many companies, small and large, make an effort to reach out through collecting donations and doing good work. Nelson Mandela’s 67 minutes each year is one such day when the entire country tries to emulate the good will and kindness of Madiba.


Of course, not everyone does contribute. There are many people who feel hopeless about the situation in this country. The poverty seems to only grow. The rate of violent crime is through the roof and gender-based violence has become an awful reality in so many neighbourhoods that everyone seems to know someone who has suffered. After a chaotic and disappointing State of the Nation Address (SONA) on 9 February 2017 it has been suggested that parliament itself has begun normalising violence in our country.


The Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation (CSVR) executive director, Nomfundo Mogapi, told The Citizen, “When violence becomes the norm as a way to resolve our problems, it eats into the social fabric of our society. This normalisation of violence is a concern… even if new actors are sworn into power, the act of violence as a way to deal with issues will remain.”


South Africa has some work to do about the state of violence in the country. The local charities are helping. They tend to the needs of the poor, the sickly, the abandoned and the victimised. But they struggle to keep up. And so, when big international organisations get involved it often shakes things up and the work these charities and the like, can do is often more than our local counterparts.


Let’s consider Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), an international organisation that does incredible work all over the world but mostly in war torn countries. The organisation is based in South Africa too and they focus predominantly on endemic and epidemic disease, healthcare exclusion and social violence. Three of their projects are centres that provide focused care in and around South Africa.


The Kgomotso Care Centre provides medical (emergency or other) and psychological care to those victimised by sexual violence in the Rustenburg area. The statistics in this area are alarming. Most recent reports state that one in three women have been raped at some point. In Durban, an MSF emergency team from the Eshowe project assisted during a spate of xenophobic violence in the city.


The team offered medical care, psychosocial counselling, water and sanitation logistics and coordinated and collaborated with other international organisations. In Khayelitsha in the Western Cape, MSF runs its oldest HIV project in our country. Getting involved with an organisation such as the MSF is easy. By visiting their website you can gain keen insight into where they need assistance most.


Getting involved in local charities is just as easy and they need support more now than ever. While the international charities are able to fund bigger projects quicker the local ones work tirelessly at trying to curb poverty, neglect and so on, one person at a time.

About The Author

I was born in the Eastern Cape, close to the waves. After getting my degree in Media, Communication and Culture, I knew it was time to make my way to a big city. Not wanting to leave the ocean, Cape Town was the natural choice for me. At first I thought the fast paced world of marketing. But I never forgot that what I'd always wanted to do was write. Now I'm a freelance writer, where my office is my bedroom and my platform is the World Wide Web. I live with my partner and our two beloved Great Danes. When not reading or writing you can probably find me on the beach or exploring nature trails.

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