Charity profile

Background and description:
Aitsa! After Care Centre opened its doors in 2014 in the picturesque village of Kylemore. Most of the families in Kylemore are in challenging circumstances as parents work long hours and they struggle under the burden of poverty.  Children are often left unattended, hungry and neglected, roaming the streets. Such children find solace in groups. In similar situations and together they can get involved in crime, sexual promiscuity and substance abuse.
For this reason, an after-care centre, open every afternoon after school, plays such an integral role. Not only does Aitsa! provide a safe place where children receive a cooked meal and fruit daily, but it is a place where children’s full potential can be developed.
Through holistic programs Aitsa! provides a stimulated, nurturing and loving environment. Currently they serve 200 children between the ages of 5 and 13 years and 16 full time staff members, mostly residing in the village of Kylemore.

Core Purpose and Impact:
Aitsa! After Care Centre wants to create a safe, loving and stimulating environment where each child’s full potential can be developed. We commit to partnering with each child and his/her parents from age 5 until they reach adulthood at the age of 18. We want to take in 35 kids, annually from Grade R to Grade 12. We will have a total 455 children in the next 7 years.

Our Values:
Our impact will be rolled out by implementing the following core values:

1. An environment of “Excellence”: Each child deserves only the best and we want to create an environment where they receive nothing less than the best exposure and stimulation. For this reason, top quality programmes as well as continuous training for educators and partnering with professionals, form such an integral part of Aitsa! We believe that in an environment of excellence each child will have the best chance to develop their own unique potential.

2 Holistic perspective: We believe that the only way to reach our dream of developing each child’s unique potential effectively, is to nurture all the aspects of the child’s development. Therefor our programmes include the following areas on a daily basis: spiritual, emotional, physical, educational and nutritional.
3 Early intake and long- term commitment: We commit to take in our children as early as possible and walk with them as long as possible. We therefor enrol our children when they are 5 years old. Our commitment to them is until the age of 18 or when the finish school.
Parent Partnership: We believe that a child’s full potential cannot be reached without the buy-in and cooperation of the parent community. This creates a sense of ownership. We have 9 compulsory contact sessions in a year where parents have time to bond with their children, have individual counselling as well as workshops and training on different aspects of parenting. We are excited about our parent community relationship and believe it forms the basis for our healthy journey with each child.
Bible-base value system:  Our foundation at Aitsa! is our Christian Faith and Biblical values underline all our programmes and initiatives.

Our Programmes

: Social worker, Aitsa! rehab program, clinical and educational psychologist, mentorship program
Rugby, golf, mountain biking, netball, soccer, child kinetics and cricket
Art and Cultural
: Hip hop, choir, chess, art classes, sewing and drama
Daily cooked meal, veggies, fruit, peanut butter sandwich
: Maths remedial in-class program, reading assistance program, maths tutoring, reading buddies, library, e-learning programs, homework support and foundation phase remedial support
Parent programmes:
workshops, parent-child bonding sessions, parent counselling, compulsory programs
We have an extensive volunteer programme where we invite many professional and passionate people, who want to make a difference in their surrounding community an opportunity

Stats and achievements

@ We currently serve 50% of the local school’s Gr R- Gr 5 children.
@ Our attendance is 95% daily
@ We have 3 children in the Western Cape chess team 2017, 2 in 2018
@ We have 2 children in Cape Winelands chess team 2018
@ We have been nominated as top 10 after care centre in the Western Cape Department of    Education Game changer awards 2016
@ 7 of the top 10 academic achievers in Gr 5, attending the local primary school, are from Aitsa! 2019
@ All top 10 academic achievers in Gr 4, attending the local primary school, are from Aitsa! 2019
@ We were chosen as one of 15 beneficiaries of the Cape Wine Auction Trust supporting excellence in NGO’s serving communities in the Cape Winelands

Specific needs

We have the following needs that still need funding:

1. Library: We want to extend our current library into a bigger container format. Providing space for a study area, reading corner and variety of books for children and parents: Cost R20 000
2. Electricity cables: Cost R55 000
3. Table tennis table: Cost R10 000
4. Plants for our play area: Cost R5000
5. Volunteer and team t shirts: Cost R6000
6. Repair of ablutions: Cost R10 000
7. Security cameras: Cost R20 000
8. Classroom container: Cost: R150 000

How to get involved

@ Mentorship Program: Join our team of mentors and be part of our big brother/big sister program for Gr 4-5. One hour a week
@ Reading buddies and Maths tutors. Small group facilitation. One hour a week.
@ Sponsor-a-child-program: Sponsor a child/ren for R300 per child per month and ensure that he/she gets a safe and stimulating environment after school.
@ Sponsor-a teacher program: Sponsor a teacher for between R3500 and R10 000 per month.
@ Sport coach: Join our variety of sport programs and give your input or start your own sport at Aitsa!
@ Cultural programs: Join our current cultural programs like art, choir or dancing or start your own
@ Counsellor: Weekly sessions of individual or group therapies
@ Donation: Please consider making a donation. All SA residence’s donations are tax deductible
@ Prayer buddy: Join our weekly onsite prayer group or become a prayer buddy for specific children and educators
@ Corporate sponsorship:
Let your company donate or sponsor any of the above and receive a tax certificate. We are also fully BEE accredited. Aitsa! also welcome corporate team building activities where staff can interact with children or help with painting and gardening.

In Conclusion
Aitsa! is growing and we are seeing the fruit of our model of change. We really believe that we are impacting not only the individual children and their families but also the greater community. We would love to partner with individuals or corporates who want to be part of this journey.

“It is in your hands to create a better world for all who live in it”- Nelson Mandela-

Contact details

Marietjie Steyn
Founder and Director
082 337 6242