The Great Depression of the 1930’s had left in its wake a heritage of suffering, including significant numbers of disabled and chronically ill children living in destitute circumstances on the Cape Flats around Cape Town. In 1935, the Pallottine Sisters responded to the need and opened a Home for these children. They suffered from Tuberculosis, Flu pandemics. malnutrition, Polio and other severe and chronic illnesses. Read our history timeline…
Sadly, for so many of our children and their families the Great Depression lives on. 60% of South African children live in poverty and have a life expectancy of 47.7 years. Consider, too, that 75% of children up to six years of age are also living in poverty. This adds up to 5.2 million children in South Africa who remain caught up in a poverty cycle. Today the Pallottine Sisters are needed even more than ever.
Today we provide care for children suffering from
- TB / HIV / AIDS
- all forms of cancer
- insulin dependent diabetes
- congenital birth defects
- juvenile arthritis
- heart, renal and respiratory failures
- and other chronic long term illnesses
The Pallottine Sisters along with a caring staff continue to make a difference in the lives of the children we serve.
Most of our children come from informal settlements where clean water, electricity, sanitation and nutritious food are in short supply. Unemployment is over 60% and mothers who work, usually as house cleaners for minimum wages, tend to be absent from their homes for long periods of time. The informal settlements are breeding grounds for drug and alcohol abuse, crime and ill health.
45% of our children are in treatment for up to a year, 20% for up to 6 months and 35% are in treatment for 3 months or less. Our children occupy five medical wards:
- Sunflower Medical Ward cares for infants and young children suffering from HIV/AIDS / TB
- Daisy (oncology and diabetic girls and boys up to 9 years of age)
- Sweet Basil (girls and boys up to 9 years of age)
- Protea ( boys ages 10 and over)
- Freesia (girls ages 10 and over)
Meet the board, managment and staff of St Joseph’s Home for Children. Read about our staff.