Kids Haven August 2022 News
“We can live in a way that honours and multiplies the power of our individual connections. We can begin to imagine a new set of relationships — a new set of connections across the fault lines that divide our society.” Daily Maverick 11 August 2022
Kids Haven embraces the idea of Mandela Day every year, and especially in July 2022 after two years of a global pandemic and very limited contact with others outside of our organization. This year, we welcomed more than fifty different companies and individuals who took their time to connect with Kids Haven. Mandela Day spanned a few days this year and brought connections into our space well into the month of August, including a special day on Women’s Day. Our children enjoyed Debonairs Pizza, and Milky Lane ice cream served by Nosipho, once a Kids Haven child herself!
We have shared our thanks with everyone who joined us and posted many photos on social media. But we cannot truly express just how wonderful this time has been. American research shared in the Daily Maverick article in the title above suggests that “informal ties between people from different socioeconomic background promote economic connectedness. These ties are powerful and may even have a stronger impact on outcomes than a person’s school, home life and community.” This has been our experience of Mandela Day 2022 and it thrills us.
What comes from these connections? Kids Haven has one young man who is starting a new learnership this Monday with an international Sports brand because of Mandela Day. The same brand is hosting a Career Day on 10 September where key staff will share their personal stories of work, how to land a job, what to expect when you get that job, and how do you keep that job and grow.
How does Kids Haven know that running a Career Day is a good idea? Because we are listening to our former children who are now part of a regular Youth Advisory Council, and they tell us this is what they want to know. We are listening to our teenagers in the new Teen Hub who stress the need to find out more about choosing the right careers one day. We listen to our children in care who meet as Care Leavers on the cusp of leaving residential care and becoming young adults. They want to know what does work look like. What does it take to get work that means you don’t need to rely on a boyfriend?
Our reality is that children in our communities and in our home are wanting to make good decisions for themselves. But they lack examples from their own families and within their own frame of reference. They haven’t grown up in families where adults leave for work every day – day in and day out. They are part of a community where everyone they know looks stuck, but they want things to turn out differently for them. Kids Haven recognises just how powerful Mandela Day can be because it brings the world of work into our space through people who share their personal and professional experience.
Our next step in maximising the connections we made on Mandela Day was our invitation to a large factory on our doorstep in Actonville Benoni. Five factories under one roof making products for a global market. The COO reflected that his own father was a factory worker who, through his solid job, was able to provide for his family allowing this man to focus on his schoolwork, secure a bursary, train as an engineer, and ultimately become the business owner of a factory employing more mums and dads. We are excited by their invitation to Kids Haven to bring youth and teens into the factory space for first-hand experience.
Thank you to these Companies and others who joined us on Mandela Day and who see possibilities and connections that will significantly impact lives. It might look like ‘just painting’ or ‘only planting some vegetables’, but it is so much more. Collaboration and community builds opportunity and inclusion for all.
You receive this newsletter because you are part of our community of care. We could not tackle the complex problems of child protection and care without you. Please click through to our Impact report for 2021 2022 here and see just how much has been done and can be done because you care.
When we listen to the Youth and our teenagers, we know that we need to build even more connections.
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