Greetings Friend,

The STM focus for the past six weeks has been to help develop services in the new multipurpose center we’ve helped build at Klipkop. The challenge is not only to generate the necessary financial resources, but also to identify the “champions” with the commitment and ability to make things happen in that brutal environment.

We’ve found those champions. They are the leaders of the Etelang Pele program operating for several years now as an NPO out of the Maranatha church multipurpose center.

Mondo Wilma Thafeni, Constance Mpolokeng, and Mpho Molakeng

Led by Mpho Molakeng, these young ladies are hard at work getting services underway in the challenging Klipkop settlement.

They have started with a crèche (day care), one of the most needed of all services because of the ravages of HIV/AIDS in the settlements. Itumeleng Leshoro (below) is one of the first 19 children they are now caring for. The goal is to care for 35 or more kids by the end of the year.

They are working to add other programs as well, including a food distribution program, an after-school drop in center for 150 kids, health awareness programs, family counseling, psychological and referral services, assistance to abused women and children, and help to obtain eligibility for government grants.If they can get these programs underway by the end of the year they have an excellent chance to obtain government support for 2015. This is critical for sustainability.

The cost to get this underway is $52,000. So far they have generated $13,600. They are working to generate the rest of this from sources in South Africa, including businesses, Rotary clubs, and various government sources.

It will help enormously if we could provide an additional $6,400 as they get underway. This will help them toward their goal and solidify their credibility to potential fund supporters in South Africa.

We ask for you to help us as much as you can. Your contribution will not only help give urgently needed services now; it will help assure program funding for years to come to help precious children like Itumeleng.

Wendell Verduin