Project information

Empowering families with disabled children

Children with disabilities in South Africa are severely marginalized,denied access to education and health services and subject to violence and stigmatization. This programme mobilizes and supports mothers to exercise their right to access services and advocate for social chance in their community.

March 2012 - January 2018

Charity information: Afrika Tikkun

Afrika Tikkun logo
  • Need


    Children with disabilities living in townships live in unacceptable circumstances. Extreme poverty, denial of access to school and other public services, sexual violence, discrimination and stigmatization characterize their daily realities. The impact has a chronic effect, not only on the child but on the entire family. Caregivers,often single mothers,need help to access the services their children are entitled to and support in coping, making a living and advocating for social change.


    Afrika Tikkun is mobilizing mothers of children with disabilities to develop a peer led self-help group and capacitating them to be able to address the issue. The programme enables the parents of children with disabilities to work together as agents of change in their community by creating a safe enabling, non-discriminatory and inclusive environment within the townships where they live and providing participants with the tools, resources and encouragement they need.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To empower mothers to stand up for their rights and effect change in attitude in their community


    » Establish a self-help group
    » Provide workshops on rights, responsibilities, leadership and self-advocacy to build capacity, practical skills, self efficacy and knowledge.
    » Capacitate the group with organisational and management skills and monitoring and evaluation principals so they can sustain the group themselves.

    Mothers in the group are actively engaged in advocating for their rights and effecting change in attitudes in their community.

    Aim 2

    Full inclusion and access provision in schools, day centres, grant schemes, health services & courts


    » Facilitate the establishment of formal links between the self help group and relevant governmental, community and non-governmental partners.
    » Guide participants to actively participate in mobilizing their community to create an enabling and inclusive environment
    » Enable children with disabilities to benefit from the full range of educational and family support programmes provided by Afrika Tikkun.

    The children in the self help group are enrolled in Afrika Tikkun centres & schools or day centres, they're receiving grants eligible to them & are granted access to local services

    Aim 3

    At least 5,000 people are educated about the rights of children with disabilities by January 2018


    » Facilitate the self-help group to implement a community awareness campaign promoting inclusion
    » Generate and disseminate quality information about the situation as well as the outcomes of this programme locally, nationally and internationally.

    The participants are spreading the word to audiences at a local, regional and national level

  • Impact


    1. Children with disabilities and their families enjoy an improved quality of life.
    2. The peer-led self help group is sustained and replicated.
    3. The community is aware of the rights of children with disabilities and actively including them without discrimination.


    There is a risk that we will not be able to secure funding for the final year of the project and it would need to be run outside of the core work of Afrika Tikkun, without financial backing. The self-help group would need to be self-sustaining earlier than expected.


    Donors will receive updates every year (or more frequently if desired). They will also be added to our mailing list to receive our bi-annual newsletter.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £118,750

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      Amount Heading Description
      £28,500 Operations All operational costs
      £66,900 Salaries For the programme facilitators and programme manager
      £10,000 Skills Development & Training Skills and training for the employed and voluntary staff
      £13,350 Events Integrated events for the disabled children, their families and wider community

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Anonymous Foundation £25,000 Conditional
    Individual Donors £5,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    4 locations in the Gauteng region of South Africa. Location 1 - Orange Farm - the largest informal settlement in South Africa, with an estimated population of over 1 million people. Location 2 - Diepsloot - a mixture of informal and government built formal settlements with a population of over 350,000 . Location 3 - Alexandra - Famous for its previous residents including Nelson Mandela. Location 4 - Uthando - based in the inner city suburb of Hillbrow


    Families in all 4 locations lack access to basic services such as clean drinking water, sewage, electricity & rubbish removal. An average of 60% of the residents are unemployed. There are high levels of social stress & crime. Drug & alcohol abuse and domestic violence, is endemic. The community also experiences serious health problems, HIV/Aids & TB in particular. These conditions are made worse for families of children with disabilities who are discriminated against by their own communities.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Afrika Tikkun is an award-winning NGO with Nelson Mandela as Chief Patron and has been working in South Africa for over 20 years. We work with partners to provide a Cradle to Career holistic development model for children and young people between the ages of 0 and 25. The experience we’ve gained over 20 years will be used to successfully enhance the programme and increase the number of beneficiaries.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Jean Elphick

    Jean is an expert in her field and has been employed to facilitate the project, she oversees the local staff.

Thanks to the Empowerment programme at Afrika TIkkun I now look forward to a future with Angela. Before i joined I did not know where to go, who to speak to or what to do for Angela. I now know my rights as a mother of a child with a disability and the rights my child has.

Antionette, mother to Angela who was diagnosed with Autism shortly after joining Afrika Tikkun in 2014.