Young hopefuls

Being young and living in South Africa comes with many challenges such as unemployment, peer pressure and at times, access to basic services i.e. education. When a child is placed in an institution such as a children’s home or is a part of a community care programme, it seems the stacks against you are stacked even higher. But, being in a home or programme could be the one chance that helps change a child’s life.
Thanks to YOU, these young people have been afforded the opportunity to envision a bright future for themselves and families.

Changed behaviour is a recipe for success

Thembi (17) has always felt the need to fit in. Her mother passed away when she was a baby and her father’s whereabouts are unknown. She was adopted by family members but that was not a conducive environment for a young girl who longed to belong. As a coping mechanism, Thembi began stealing, lying and was disrespectful to those around her and her family could not take care of her anymore.

In 2015, she was placed at the Abraham Kriel Bambanani Langlaagte Campus and attends a special needs school. She was a disruptive pupil and was always fighting with others.  In 2020, after countless therapy sessions, Thembi and her social worker had a break through. “In 2020, we saw a big change in Thembi’s behaviour. This behavioural change may have been brought on by the fact that we had traced and found her maternal family. This has had a positive impact on her – she now has a sense of belonging. She has become more open and through therapy has gained insight into her behaviour and is always trying to do better”, says Social Worker, Renata van Jaarsveld.

Thembi is in her final year at school and is an RCL member (prefect).

A huge accomplishment for a pupil who was disruptive and disrespectful.

Thembi wants to become a chef and she and her social worker are looking at culinary schools. “Thembi has had a career assessment and we know for sure that this is what she wants to do. She has been consistent with her dream of becoming a chef – she is always helping with cooking at the house and is always the first to put up her hand to bake or cook lunch for special occasions. We are looking for a culinary school for her. She is anxious about her future but is excited and looking forward to what the next chapter of her life brings”, adds Renata.

Mandla’s first soccer trial

Playing in the DSTV Premier Soccer League (PSL) is a dream for many of the young boys in the township.  Mandla (14) is one such boy who dreams of playing soccer professionally.

Mandla is in AKB’s Soweto Family Care Programme.  He lives in Emdeni, Soweto with his paternal grandmother. The family lives in a four room home and are dependent on the granny’s grant and child support grant they receive for Mandla and his brother. Mandla believes playing for a club in the PSL will change his life for the better. “I want to build a house for my grandmother. A house where I will have my own bedroom. Going to my first trial at Kaizer Chiefs was one of the best days of my life”, says Mandla.

Mandla recently went to a one day trial at one of the biggest soccer clubs in South Africa … Kaizer Chiefs Football Club.  “This trial and experience meant a lot to him. Being at the clubs training grounds in Naturena, made him feel special and confident” says Mandla’s coach at the Emdeni Football Club.  To top it all off, he had the opportunity to meet Kaizer Chiefs first team coach Arthur Zwane. “We are very fortunate and happy that our beneficiaries are afforded these kinds of opportunities. It gives them hope and exposes them to life beyond their current environment”, says Social Worker, Innocentia Baloyi.

Mandla and his coach have not heard from Kaizer Chiefs as yet. They are expecting feedback from the club in August.

Mandla attended the trials with donated soccer boots and will need sufficient gear for the future.


I WILL become a social worker

“Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be at university. I didn’t think I had a chance”– Lucia.

Lucia is a 21 year old beneficiary of the Benoni Satellite home and is studying towards a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities with a major in Psychology at the North West University. She could not enrol for the Social Work course she has always dreamed of because she fell short of three points on the Admission Point Score required for admission. But, this has not deterred Lucia from working towards her dream.

To study towards a four year Social Work qualification and to stay at the university’s residence, Lucia will need to accumulate points from her current course and another student programme. In May, she joined the university’s radio programme. This programme will allow her to accumulate enough points to stay on the campus. “Radio was never a part of my plan. At first I was just doing it to earn points but I’m really enjoying it. It is a great platform that has allowed me to use my voice, listen, learn from others and to speak up”, says Lucia.

Lucia was placed in AKB’s care because she is considered an orphan and had no-one to care for her.

“Being here (university) makes me so happy and I want to make sure I use this opportunity to make something of my life. I thought I was the only one who didn’t have parents and was in a children’s home, but that isn’t the case. I’ve met so many other students who have a similar story to mine and that has also helped me deal with my trauma. I’m even more motivated now to want to become a social worker and help others. I will work hard and get my credits to study social work in 2023. I am grateful for this opportunity and what YOU have done for me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart”, adds Lucia.

We have graduates!

This “graduation season”, the AKB Soweto Family Care programme had students walk up the podium to receive their degrees.

Aya graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce in Law degree and is studying towards an LLB at the University of Johannesburg.

Mase graduated with a BSc Life Sciences degree and is currently doing her honours at the Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University.

We’re very proud of them and wish them all the best with their postgraduate studies.  Abraham Kriel Bambanani approaches donors and foundations to obtain funds for tertiary studies.  Study fees and living costs are only possible when donors are involved.

Jong Hoopvolles

Jongmense in Suid-Afrika ervaar talle uitdagings;  werkloosheid, groepsdruk en soms selfs toegang tot basiese dienste soos onderwys. Wanneer ‘n kind in ‘n kinderhuis opgeneem word of deel is van ‘n gemeenskapsversorgingsprogram, voel dit asof die uitdagings onoorkomelik is.  Terselfdertyd;  is dit party kinders se enigste kans om hul lewens ingrypend te verander.

Te Danke aan Jou, kan ons ‘n paar voorbeelde gee van kinders wie se lewens ingrypend verander het omdat hulle in Abraham Kriel Bambanani se sorg geplaas is.

Gedragsverandering is ‘n resep vir sukses

Thembi (17) het nooit gevoel dat sy iewers inpas nie.  Haar ma is oorlede toe sy nog ‘n baba was en haar pa is onbekend.  Hoewel familie haar aangeneem het, het sy nooit gevoel dat sy daar hoort nie.  Ten einde tred te hou met haar omstandighede het sy gesteel, bedrieg en onrespekvol opgetree totdat die familie nie langer kans gesien het vir haar nie.

In 2015 is Thembi opgeneem by Abraham Kriel Bambanani se Langlaagte kampus.  By haar skool saai sy ontwrigting en baklei met almal.  Na vyf jaar en talle terapiesessies, bereik Thembi en haar maatskaplike werker ‘n deurbraak.  “In 2020 verander Thembi se gedrag.  Hierdie gedragsverandering was moontlik te wyte aan die feit dat ons haar familie van moederskant opgespoor het.  Daar was onmiddellik ‘n positiewe impak en ‘n gevoel dat sy iewers behoort.  Thembi kon nou haar hart uitpraat en met nóg terapie verkry sy insig in gedragspatrone en ‘n strewe om aanhoudend te verbeter.” Sê Renata van Jaarsveld, haar maatskaplike werker.

Thembi is in haar finale jaar van skool en ‘n PREFEK.  ‘n Groot prestasie vir ‘n leerling wat ontwrigtend en onrespekvol was.

Thembi wil graag ‘n sjef word …  sy en haar maatskaplike werker is op soek na ‘n geskikte kookskool.

“Loopbaanbeplanning en aanlegtoetse dui dat hierdie ‘n konstante droom en belangstelling is.  Wanneer daar koek of ekstra lekker kos vir ‘n spesiale geleentheid (iemand se verjaardag) gemaak moet word, is Thembi blitsvinnig in die kombuis.

Skakel gerus met voorstelle en raad vir Thembi se toekoms.

Mandla se eerste sokker proewe

Elke seun droom om in die DSTV Premier Sokker Liga te speel.  Dit is ook Mandla (14) se droom om ‘n professionele sokkerspeler te wees.

Mandla is in Abraham Kriel Bambanani se Soweto Family Care Programme.  Hy en sy broer woon in Emdeni, Soweto by sy Ouma.  Hulle leef op Ouma se staatspensioen en twee kindertoelae.   Mandla glo dat ‘n posisie in ‘n PSL Klub sy lewe drasties kan verbeter.  “Ek wil ‘n huis bou vir my Ouma.  ‘n Huis waar ek my eie kamer kan hê .  My eerste dag van proewe by Kaizer Chiefs was een van die beste dae van my lewe.” sê Mandla.

Mandla se afrigter by die Emdeni Sokkerklub sê: “Die proewe en ervaring by Kaizer Chiefs se klubgronde in Naturena, het geweldig baie vir Mandla beteken.  Dit het hom spesiaal laat voel en meer selfvertroue gegee.”

Die hoogtepunt was verseker die ontmoeting met Kaizer Chiefs se eerste span afrigter, Arthur Zwane.

“Ons voel so bevoorreg en gelukkig wanneer ons kinders geleenthede kry.  Dit gee hoop en blootstelling aan ‘n lewe buite hul huidige omstandighede.” Sê Innocentia Baloyi, Mandla se maatskaplike werker.

Mandla en sy afrigter verwag ‘n antwoord van Kaizer Chiefs in Augustus – hou duim vas asseblief.

Mandla het gaan proewe speel met tweedehandse sokkerstewels, maar dié is klaar OPgespeel.


Ek WIL ‘n maatskaplike werker wees

“Ek het nie in my wildste drome gedink dat ek op universiteit sal land nie.  Ek het nie gedink dit is hoegenaamd moontlik nie.” – Lucia.

Lucia  (21), het opgegroei in AKB se Benoni Satelliethuis.  Sy is ‘n weeskind.

Vandag is sy ‘n eerstejaar by die Noordwes Universiteit, Potchefstroom kampus.  Sy wil ‘n maatskaplike werker wees, maar het 3 punte gekort vir toelating.  Tans studeer sy  vir ‘n BA in Geesteswetenskappe met ‘n hoofvak in Sielkunde.

Ten einde volgende jaar toelating tot Maatskaplike Werk te kry, moet Lucia punte bymekaar maak met haar huidige kursus, asook deel wees van ‘n studente program.  Gedurende Mei het sy deel geraak van die Universiteit se Radio Program.  “Radio was nooit deel van my plan nie, maar dit was een manier om punte bymekaar te maak vir volgende jaar se studies.  NOU, geniet ek myself gate uit!  Dit is ‘n uitstekende platform om my stem te gebruik, te luister en te leer van ander en ‘n opinie uit te spreek.” Sê Lucia.

“My huidige omstandighede maak my so gelukkig en ek wil beslis my lewe verbeter met hierdie studie geleentheid.  Ek het ook gedink dat ek die enigste kind is sonder ouers wat in ‘n kinderhuis grootword.  Dit is gladnie die geval nie.  Daar is soveel ander studente met dieselfde gemis en hierdie kennis het my gehelp om my eie trauma te verwerk.  Nou is ek net meer gemotiveerd om my droom te bereik.  Ek werk hard om krediete te verdien sodat 2023 die begin van my BA Maatskaplike Werk-graad kan wees. Ek is SO dankbaar vir hierdie geleentheid en wat JULLE vir my doen.  Dankie met my hele hart” sê Lucia.


Die gradeplegtigheid-seisoen lewer twee gegradueerdes van AKB se Soweto Family Care Programme.  Dit is twee jongdames wat in min-of-meer dieselfde omstandighede leef as Mandla, die sokkerspeler en deur die Genade ‘n kans gekry het.

Aya, B Comm Regte en sy doen tans haar LLB by die Universiteit van Johannesburg.

Mase, BSc Life Sciences by Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University en sy doen tans haar honneursgraad.

Almal hier by Abraham Kriel Bambanani en almal wat vir Aya en Mase ken is so trots.  Ons wens hulle ook die allerbeste toe met die nagraadse studies.

Donateurs, maatskappye, stigtings en trustfondse word benodig om geleenthede te skep vir jongmense.  Klasgelde en lewenskoste vir studente kan net met donateursgeld betaal word.

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