Help us raise funds for social workers in Alex
- By: Tracey Peppler
- Short URL: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/social-workers-for-alex
Alexandra-based NPC and PBO, Rays of Hope, has set a brave and bold goal for 2022: to raise R1 million in funding to grow its cohort of social workers that help the township’s people move from vulnerability to independence.
“When you’re sick, a doctor can assess the problem and give you a diagnosis and prescription, and when you’re struggling emotionally, you can speak to a good friend or even a psychologist,” explains Bertha Muchadeyi, Social Work and Vulnerable Programmes Manager at Rays of Hope. “But who do you speak to when life happens, and you don’t know who to turn to for help or where to find the practical information you need to get your life back on track?
“That’s where social workers come in – they are specially trained professionals who can think critically about challenges and design and implement solutions that are relevant to each person’s needs, so that they can overcome the challenges they face,” she says.
In a South African context, social workers are in massive demand, as our country’s people face the challenges of unemployment, gender-based violence, sexuality and teenage pregnancy. However, many of those staring these problems down don’t know how a social worker can help – or even how they can find one to help them.
Rays of Hope has grown its cohort of social workers that provide vital support to the Alexandra community, but the community’s need is so much greater than what its existing funding can support – even though many of its social workers are giving of their time for no financial reward.
“We also believe that social workers should earn more than the R5,000 that is common within environments like Alexandra, making our goal a dual one: that of employing more social workers to support the community, and of paying them a salary that recognises their skill and importance,” she adds.
Bringing more social workers into the Alexandra community will help build a better future for everyone that lives there, whether it’s by counselling families to improve the physical and psychological wellbeing of everyone in the household, linking indigent families to aid organisations, helping people fight addictions, or linking them with skills development programmes and opportunities for work.
“So many of Alexandra’s residents are stuck in the same cycles of gender-based violence, unemployment, and poverty that their parents and grandparents were,” Bertha says. “We know that a dedicated team of social workers can help break these cycles and give people the tools, knowledge and confidence that they need to move beyond the legacies of this township.
“We’re appealing to Johanesburg’s people – most of whom engage with an Alex resident every day of their lives – to help make this a reality. No contribution is too small, and every contribution will help make a positive difference to this community, to their future, and to the future of the city,” John Shuttleworth, interim CEO of Rays of Hope, adds.
In the news:
- May 13, 2022 - R 200.00
- "Thank you Rays of Hope and all that you are doing for the community. " - Juliette
- May 13, 2022 - R 200.00
- "Such a great initiative! " - Kerry