If you're thinking about spending some time overseas by volunteering or your university course requires you to undertake an internship, it's crucial that a legitimate company does your placement. South Africa is a popular destination for volunteers, students and interns, and that means there are plenty of providers waiting to sign you up. However, the most important thing is that the NPO and their project fits your requirements, as well as adding actual value to their organisation's work.
The African Sunrise team dedicates a considerable amount of time into our relationships with every NPO, NGO and organisation we work with. It's crucial that we have a reliable and robust connection to each project so that we understand what they can offer our volunteers, students and interns when we make placements. That's why our dedicated Project Liaison lead Ululutho is in constant contact with every organisation and works with each person throughout their stay in Cape Town.
Undertaking an internship or volunteering visit to South Africa can be life-changing and we put a lot of work into ensuring you receive the correct placement options. And to help you get a feel for what projects you can work with; this blog will take you through some examples.
Homes of Safety and What They Do –
African Sunrise currently works with three Homes of Safety in Cape Town, and each facility cares for children and adolescents who need to be removed from their home environment. For legal and safety reasons, we don't give out any details about the specific organisations online but will provide full details when you contact us directly.
1: Home of Safety for Boys from Vulnerable Backgrounds
This project focuses on boys of all ages, including teenagers, from vulnerable backgrounds. They live in the Home of Safety for various reasons, including an unsafe home environment and abuse. Every child or teenager is there from a referral by a social worker or workers and placed at the Home by order of a children's court. The boys are often removed from homes and environments where violence and substance abuse were commonplace. Many, if not all the children have suffered from physical, verbal, emotional or sexual abuse.
The role of the Home is to give the boys a structured daily and weekly schedule, with an emphasis on education, completing homework, as well as groups sessions, sports activities and valuable play time. This is a full-time facility, and the boys live onsite. Everyone has regular sessions with a qualified social worker, who may also work with the child's family for reintegration purposes.
2: Home of Safety for Children from Vulnerable Backgrounds
This Home of Safety is for infants, children and adolescents, both male and female. Every infant, child or teenager is there from a referral by a social worker or workers and placed at the Home by order of a children's court. The children are often removed from homes and environments where violence and substance abuse were commonplace. Many, if not all the children have suffered from physical, verbal, emotional or sexual abuse.
The Home is a full-time facility, and the children live onsite. They have a set daily schedule which includes education, sports and other activities. Everyone has regular sessions with a qualified social worker, who may also work with the child's family for reintegration purposes.
3: Home for Babies and Children Up to Five Years Old
This Home of Safety provides full-time care for up to forty-nine babies and children, from birth to five years of age. Every infant or child is there from a referral by a social worker or workers and placed at the Home by order of a children's court.
The infants and children are either neglected, abandoned, abused or orphaned. Every baby or child that needs their care is accepted, regardless of their HIV status, ill-health, race or gender.
The roles volunteers, interns and field studies students can participate in are different for these Homes of Safety. This is due to the levels of access to confidential files on each child that is under strict rules and regulations, with more privilege granted to interns who undertake one-to-one sessions. However, every placement made at the Homes of Safety are very in-depth, and each individual we have placed in the past all made a significant contribution to the project, and more importantly, the children's lives.
Breaking Bread Community Development –
Homeless Outreach Programme
Breaking Bread Community Development works with homeless people in the suburbs of Salt River and Observatory. They run a Feeding Programme from Monday to Thursday, serving two meals a day – typically breakfast and dinner. On Friday, they host a mobile soup kitchen in Observatory called Soup Sessions. It's a chance for local people to drop by and get to know some of the homeless people in their community. They also encourage any local musicians or performers to join them.
Breaking Bread also assists the local children with an Afterschool Programme to help with their homework. And during the school holidays, there is also a Holiday Programme that involves taking the children out on educational, community-based and leisure activities.
Volunteers, interns and field study students can run workshops and arrange the Holiday Programme schedules, as well as assisting the children with their core subjects for tests and homework assignments.
Homeless Shelters for Men and Women –
African Sunrise partners with a group of Homeless Shelters situated in Cape Town. Each organisation provides temporary shelter, seven days a week. While using their facilities, each person can access related services, such as physical care, social welfare, and family reunification services.
There are also spaces for those that have been in alcohol and drug rehabilitation centres and are working a programme. Additionally, the advice is available for anyone who is struggling with substance abuse issues and would like referrals to various AA and NA meetings in the area.
Every Shelter serves hot meals and beverages. There are opportunities to undertake skills training and to attend various empowerment-based workshops. A qualified social worker visits every Shelter weekly and offers one-on-one counselling sessions, which includes an updated casefile for each participant.
The roles volunteers, interns and field studies students can participate in may vary for the Homeless Shelters we work with. This may be because of levels of access to confidential files on some of the more vulnerable people who may be in some sort of protection agreement. We will discuss more about this during direct contact as this will be decided when we liaise with the specific Shelter.
African Sunrise – What You Can Expect When You Volunteer and Intern with Us –
If you choose to volunteer, intern or are performing field studies in South Africa, African Sunrise will do everything possible to make it an experience you will never forget. Additionally, our team will assist you in the planning of your time here, so it fits your studies and assignments if this applies to you.
The African Sunrise team has spent a lot of time creating a network of organisations and NPOs that we place interns and volunteers with. That's because our projects are very carefully chosen to match your field of study or interests. It's crucial that we understand each organisation's primary focus, in addition to monitoring their performance based on feedback from our interns, students and volunteers.
All our projects are hands-on, and you will get to work with children, teenagers, adults or the elderly, depending on your area of interest or the specifications of your course. Every African Sunrise intern, volunteer and student provide a real contribution towards a more equal society, and you will be part of building a better future for Cape Town's most vulnerable people by working with our team.
We cater for many fields of study, including Social Work, Teaching, Psychology, Human Rights Studies, Law Studies, Political Studies, as well as other fields like Photography, Coding, Public Relations, Communications and Logistics.
If you don't see your core subject or area of interest on the above list, please don't be discouraged. When we first started our company that list was much smaller and has grown over time to accommodate the increasingly wide range of subjects that requires an internship module, data gathering exercises, as well as specific volunteering placements.
We hope that this blog has given you more of an insight into some of the projects and organisations we work with. If you're interested in further information about any of the volunteering, internship or field studies programmes and related projects, please contact us directly, and we'll be able to go into each organisation and placement in more detail.
Rating African Sunrise –
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