St Joseph’s Cake Aunty!

Elizabeth van Neel, fondly known as Cindy, started work in the St Joseph’s kitchen in October 1989, at the tender age of 21.

Lulo loves Aqua Therapy

Four year old Lulo came to St Joseph’s for ongoing rehabilitation following a diagnosis of Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS).

Glenda – celebrating 42 years!

Glenda Jacobs joined St Joseph’s in 1980 and after 42 years of loyal and faithful service, is retiring.

St Joseph’s “keeps them smiling” as their inclusive play park shows that playing is for everyone

Pledge R86 for 86 years of making a difference!

St Joseph’s Home’s unique inclusive play park for its young patients is currently in focus in the DSTV ad campaign to kick off the “Keep them smiling” summer campaign. The all-new play park that has been specially customised for children with disabilities has added a new dimension to the care and rehabilitation that vulnerable children facing life-limiting conditions receive at the 175-bed paediatric intermediate facility in their journey to recovery.

In fact, St Joseph’s Home for Chronically Ill Children in Cape Town has been providing 24-hour specialised and general nursing care, as well as rehabilitation for children with life-threating and life-limiting conditions for 86 years and the amount of R86 will help them continue to provide the free care to the medically fragile children.

“Although we are sometimes mistaken for an orphanage, we are a fully fledged, multidisciplinary paediatric facility,” explains Christa Robijn, St Joseph’s Resource Development Manager, adding, “we not only provide 24-hour nursing care, but holistic care and support in the form of occupational therapy, dietetics, social work, physio, speech therapy and educational support. Our little ones may be on the road to recovery, but they are still children. Just like other children, these kids deserve all the love, care and, of course fun, we can provide”.

Online campaigns
Despite the continued challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, St Joseph’s has had a very busy year with a lot of its fundraising activities moving online, such as the Happy Nappy Drive (June to August) and the ongoing Stellenberg Gardens Virtual Tour, which so far has raised more than R100 000 for the home and its special, young patients.

The current “Keep them smiling” summer campaign is aimed at raising funds for the home and partnering with retailers, manufacturers and suppliers of baby and children’s products. Says Christa Robijn: “With the launch of our summer campaign, we aim to raise R300 000 to help us fill the gap that comes with stocking up on summer supplies, such as baby toiletries, summer shoes and clothes, arts and craft supplies and toys, to name a few.”

She adds: “For 86 years, St Joseph’s Home has been giving medically fragile children a second chance at childhood. Our multi-disciplinary, intermediate services are offered at no cost to our patients and their families, so we appeal to the public to help us keep doing the good work by donating R86 for 86 years of St Joseph’s holistic care. We believe in second chances and know our supporters do too.”

Donate via:
– The St Joseph’s Home website:
– SnapScan:
– Webtickets:

The power of playing: Seriously good fun!
The new inclusive play park at St Joseph’s Home’s that was opened recently was designed from scratch to enable all the children at the facility to have the opportunity to explore, learn and play; but most of all, to relax, laugh and enjoy themselves outside in the fresh air.

“Play is for everyone,” says St Joseph’s CEO, Christelle Cornelius. “It is essential to children’s development, shaping the way they interact with the world around them. It enables them to learn new skills, make friends and build self-confidence. Play also gives children opportunities to take risks and challenges. We are beyond excited and grateful to see how much our children enjoy their new playground.”

The design of the play park and its features was a collaboration between Square One architects, Afrilandscape and the clinical and therapy team at St Joseph’s, as well as specialists in the field of inclusive equipment. Unique features are a wheelchair-friendly swing, a rope net swing for patients with limited physical abilities and play surfaces that are safe and supportive.

“We embraced our brief to provide a diverse play environment as an enticing escape from the children’s wards and adjacent school” explains Hugo van Niekerk, professional landscape architect at Square One. “Knowing the hardships the patients are faced with daily, we set out to create a playground that can be enjoyed by all children by incorporating multi-functional, universally accessible play spaces that allow children to connect with nature.”

And the proof of the pudding, as they say, is in the eating! St Joseph’s young patients are loving their new, colourful and multifaceted playground in their own backyard.

St Joseph’s Home for Chronically Ill Children
Located in Montana, Cape Town, and established in 1935 by the Pallottine Missionary Sisters, this beacon in paediatric care in Southern Africa has provided expert and hands-on nursing and rehabilitation for over 23 000 orphaned and vulnerable children.

Facebook: @stjosephshome

Contact information:

Content marketing manager: Melissa Ndlovu
Tel: +27 21 934 0352

St Joseph's Happy Nappy Drive

Changing 500 nappies a day? That’s normal at St Joseph’s!

St Joseph’s annual Happy Nappy Drive is underway

Changing 500 nappies a day may sound like an impossible task to most people but this daily marathon of providing hygiene care to medically fragile children is par for the course for the staff at St Joseph’s in Cape Town. This well-loved institution provides intermediate, post-acute restorative and rehabilitative care for children with chronic or life-limiting conditions.

For the past 85 years, this beacon in paediatric care in Southern Africa has been providing general and specialised nursing care and rehabilitation therapy for over 23 000 children from vulnerable communities.

Their annual Happy Nappy Drive is underway and emphasises the tremendous needs of St Joseph’s in the practical aspects of looking after and taking care of medically fragile children.

“On average children with life-limiting conditions stay for six months at the 175-bed facility, receiving holistic and multi-disciplinary medical treatment free of charge,” says Christa Robijn, St Joseph’s Resource Development Manager.

She adds: “Every 24 hours we use more than 500 nappies and our annual nappy bill is more than R500,000. The Happy Nappy Drive is vital to meeting our children’s needs and keeping them comfortable, and our goal this year is to raise R200,000 and collect over 5,000 nappies.”

Disposable nappies
As St Joseph’s treats children with life limiting and life-threatening illnesses it uses disposable diapers as it has been proven that disposable diapers are effective in decreasing probable sepsis in neonates.

“Using disposable diapers also decreases the number of diapers used per day,” Christa explains, “and also the number of times a nurse comes into contact with a baby, especially during these COVID-19 times. Operationally, our in-house laundry also has limited capacity. Of course, we care about the environment, but we also care about a high standard of critical medical care and disposable items are needed to achieve this.”

Not considered medical
As nappies are not considered medical consumables by the Department of Health, this puts an extra financial burden on parents in the vulnerable communities, especially parents of chronically ill children.

Says Christa: “As a non-profit organisation, St Joseph’s runs a 175-bed facility and we rely on donations from organisations and individuals to enable us to provide the best quality care for our children. We fundraise all year round through various initiatives like our Happy Nappy Drive.”

There are various ways to join the Happy Nappy Drive:

A pack of nappies is about R260, but there is no minimum amount – every little bit helps!

  • Alternatively, nappies can be ordered online at Clicks, Dischem or Pick n Pay and delivered to Joseph’s, 40 Pallotti Rd, Montana, 7490, Cape Town.

For lots more info on the Happy Nappy Drive and St Joseph’s, go to:

Christa Robijn
Resource development manager, St Joseph’s Home for Chronically Ill Children
Tel. +27 21 934 0352

Thank you Kimberley-Clark!

St Joseph’s would like to express our sincere appreciation for a donation of 809 nappy packs valued at R 180 975.19!

Your donation will be a huge saving to the home, and we are grateful receiving a total of 40 442 nappies. This will stretch the need of nappies in two wards over a period of 160 days.

Calore Donation

Thank you to Calore Fireplaces and Stoves who once again donated 70 (15kg) bags of pellets to St Joseph’s valued at R5 000 to warm up the eco-friendly fireplaces in the wards. This gesture is much appreciated!

Cape Town Clothing Guild donates much needed winter clothes!

This donation is a huge expense savings to the Home, and we are grateful to have received the following items:

  • 5 x bags winter clothing (jerseys, jackets, pants, sleepwear, warm hats, underwear’s, socks, dresses, tops, shorts, scarfs, vests, etc.)
  • 2 x boxes infant clothing (towel nappies, and baby blankets)

The above donation will help us to reduce the quantity of stock that still to be purchased, and will keep our children looking beautiful and warm throughout the cold days of 2020 winter season.

Thank you!

Rheinmetall Denel Munition Donation

Hand sanitizing liquid equals liquid gold during the COVID-19 pandemic. Today, St Joseph’s Home for Chronically Ill Children welcomed a generous donation of 21 boxes of 500 ml of bottles of sanitizer from Rheinmetall Denel Munition. Handing over, is Milan Bohacek (CFO) Rheinmetall with Christelle Cornelius (CEO at St Joseph’s) and Matron Audrey Gourrah. St Joseph’s cares for more than 120 patients and has a bed capacity of 175. All its staff of more than 130 are regarded essential and report for duty each day. More than 75 litres of hand sanitizer is used each week! St Joseph’s is situated in Montana and has been under lockdown since the end of March.

Dutch Interns raise more than R40 000

Dutch Interns Demi, Isabella and Mylene, raised more than R40 000 through crowdfunding to support various needs of the children at St Joseph’s. Apart from toiletries and casual clothes need for the holidays, they also funded the necessary school clothes and SHOES! We thank you and your generous friends!