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Willing Workers in South Africa

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Willing Workers in South Africa is based in The Crags, near Plettenberg Bay, South Africa. Our aim is to promote upliftment within previously disadvantaged communities and to create a more employable workforce in the local area. This is done through skills transfer from foreign volunteers who exchange their time and skills for board and lodging. Volunteers are self-funded and pay a coordination fee to WWISA, which is proportional to the length of their stay.

 

Project Summary

In the past six months, Willing Workers in South Africa (WWISA) has seen considerable developments both in terms of its direction and the strength of its standing within the local community. As we become an increasingly established organisation within the Plettenberg Bay area, we making contact with a growing number of potential host organisations and are receiving sound advice from others involved in community development.

Our relations with the municipality have continued to strengthen and we are keen to develop this further, cooperating with the municipality in order to provide them with skilled volunteer support that can facilitate the delivery of the priorities laid out in their Integrated Development Plan.

WWISA is committed to improving life among the previously disadvantaged communities of South Africa and is keen to work alongside the necessary authorities to ensure that our service is effective, streamlined and focussed on the real problem areas challenging those communities.

WWISA’s focus on specific, localised solutions to local challenges has a direct influence on improving the quality of life for many members of the local community. We are currently concentrating our efforts into the Kurland Village Project. This is aimed at uplifting Kurland Village, a nearby township with a population of approximately 3,600. The community suffers an unemployment rate of over 28 percent and struggles with the subsequent problems of increasing crime and growing alcohol and drug abuse. The community also faces a growing incidence of HIV/AIDS cases.

The Kurland Village Project consists of a number of sub-projects through which WWISA aims to dramatically improve life in Kurland Village and ensure all members of the community can become well-informed, skilled citizens in the country’s new democracy.

Kurland Community Development Forum

Anthony Van Der Byl, the township manager in Kurland, started a non-profit organisation called the Kurland Community Development Forum to help uplift his community. In discussion within the community, the K.C.D.F. decided a multidisciplinary community centre would be the most effective solution to assist and empower our youth and address these problems. The Kurland Multi-purpose Community Centre will provide facilities for social events, recreational activities, courses and programs that will meet our villagers’ demands for skills and social development. This project is also in line with the Integrated Development Plan of the Plettenberg Bay Municipality.

The primary goals behind the Kurland Multi-purpose Community Centre are:

  • To create a safe environment where our children and youth can spend quality time engaged in social activities that will develop their interpersonal skills, improve their self-esteem and empower themselves to lead healthy and fulfilling adult lives.
  • To provide an easily accessible facility where they can attend various skills development courses, professional training workshops and computer literacy programs that will enhance their chances of successfully entering and moving ahead in the job market.
  • To present the villagers with a high standard community centre where they can get more involved in community issues, participate in cultural and social events and take part in an overall upgrade of the community.

The pioneering nature of this project and the extent to which it will benefit all sectors of the Kurland community has placed it as our primary project within the Kurland Village Project.

The Crags Primary School

Crags Primary SchoolSix international volunteers have been placed at The Crags Primary School and provided assistance to the permanent teachers. Among their main achievements, WWISA volunteers have implemented a structured disciplinary system and developed the school library into a usable resource.

As part of the reward and punishment system, volunteers have raised funding to enable them to reward classes with outings such as whale-watching trips and treetop canopy tours. We currently have a volunteer assisting with life skills classes, particularly focussed on HIV/AIDS awareness.

Self-sustainable Gardening

We are seeking volunteers to implement this system, which is funded by Plettenberg Bay Municipality. The aim is to convert yards into vegetable gardens that can then provide food to supplement diets and boost income through the sale of excess crops.

 

Kids Xplosion

Kids Xplosion runs after-school care for children experiencing difficulties in their home environment. Their aim is to care for the children by providing food, education and life skills training. They run two safe houses, a learning centre and weekly youth groups. Their work is extensive and we would love to get volunteers involved in as many aspects as possible. We currently have a football coach from England who is keen to come out to help the children of Kurland develop their soccer skills and boost their self-esteem through sporting achievements.

In addition, we have a volunteer from Mexico coming out in June to help tackle the problem of street children in Plettenberg Bay and are also seeking volunteers to assist at a local health clinic.

 

Contact:

Eric “Rocky” Reeder, Project Director
wwisaafrica@telkomsa.net

WWIS Web Site: www.wwisa.co.za

A W.I.S.H. Africa

awish@awish.net


A World Institute for a Sustainable Humanity