SAVF’s year of service delivery 2017 – 2018 Changing lives…

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived.  It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela

SAVF is celebrating 114 years of services in 2018.

Services are managed under the leadership of the National Executive Board, 5 NEB committees, 4 steering committees, 5 provincial committees and 87 local service managements.

SAVF is a national welfare organisation rendering widespread services in SOUTH AFRICA.

Facilities are located in 23 welfare districts and 337 urban areas, towns and communities, in

  • Gauteng
      • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Mpumalanga
      • Limpopo
  • North West.

Services from programmes and projects are not limited to the said provinces, but also extend to other provinces.


Many numbers are given, but each one represents a person – a child, an adult or an elderly person with his or her unique circumstances and needs, reached and touched by SAVF.

Extensive services to 274 420 people were rendered from 178 facilities

  • 4 child and youth care centres
  • 32 early childhood development day centres
  • 38 social work offices
  • 4 shelters
  • 31 homes for older persons
  • 54 housing schemes for elderly / adults / youth
  • 15 community / service centres

Services include:

Early childhood development, child- and youth care centres, foster care, safe homes, child protection, preventative and therapeutic programmes, empowerment of teenagers and mothers and fathers, family care, community programmes such as empowerment, skills development, poverty eradication, HIV programmes, employee health and wellness, luncheon clubs, home support services and more.

Services towards HIV /Aids calculated to 4286 persons.

Projects are usually presented in the short term and include the following:

Awareness campaigns, feeding schemes, child protection week, Tekkie Tax, Mandela day, the celebration of specific national and international days such as Youth Day, holiday projects, campaigns for older persons, and 16 Days of activism against abuse of women and children.

Tekkie Tax

“Leaving a little sparkle” by means of increased Tekkie Tax activities and fundraising led to awareness and support. SAVF is proud to be part of this initiative and especially the B-sector, BRING HOPE.

Charity shops

Eight charity shops are operational, however, more facilities undertake actions such as informal second-hand sales and planting and utilisation of vegetable gardens.


Six organisations are officially affiliated with SAVF and were assisted as emerging organisations:

  • Millennium Home of Hope, Foster care – Witrivier, Mpumalanga
  • Mali Martin/Polokegong Centre – Bronkhorstspruit and Cullinan, Mpumalanga
  • Distinct Orphan Care – Refilwe, Mpumalanga
  • Lesedi Bokamoso – Mamelodi, Gauteng
  • Tipfuxeni support and skills development centre – Oskraal, North West
  • The New Baengele baMorena – Maubane, Gauteng

Several other organisations were assisted in an informal manner and for shorter terms.

Would you like to become involved?

Please join SAVF and use your skills on SAVF local management level or by means of other assistance, fundraising or practical tasks that suit you.

It will have special meaning for the SAVF and could enrich your life as volunteer.

Nelie Viljoen-Toet

Manager Social Services

Being a Child and Youth Care Worker

How do I define what it is that I do as a CYCW?

I regard it as a service we provide to children. It is about teaching them how to be neat and to tidy up in a home environment. I like to think I provide a caring, consistent and structured environment that meets the children’s needs. Needs such as physical, emotional, social, and spiritual, as well as educational needs.

I want to give them a home where they can develop to their full potential. Our home is a place where their families are welcomed as an integral part of the child’s life.

Every day poses a challenge. It is not always easy and there are days that are better than others. It is a challenging environment to work in. There are days that you feel like giving up, but then one little word of encouragement changes that. We work long hours, but we work as a team. We become like a family. I am very fortunate to work with people worth their weight in gold. People who go out of their way to assist where assistance is needed and where the children always come first.

To me being a CYCW is not just a job, I see it as a calling.

By Meraldi Fourie

Amazing Grace

(A true story about how love conquers all fear)

Our story begins with a strong, courageous lady with dancing blue eyes and attitude in her stride.  She touched the lives of so many with her beautiful compassionate heart.  However, her heart was reserved for one special little boy whom she waited for all her life … she would receive him as a gift from above.

It was dawn and thirteen days to Christmas.  The city was dressed in festive décor.  The Jacaranda trees beautified the city with their purple shade.  The maternity ward at the city hospital was buzzing with new life and mothers, who were overjoyed and proud of their bundles of joy.  Tucked away in the far end of the ward, a baby bundle cried his first cry.  With one quick movement the nurse placed the baby boy in the incubator, no loving arms to hold him.  “The mother cannot keep him”, (whispers behind judging hands).   The baby would be called Stevie … you see, because our story would not be complete without this strong, courageous boy.

He is the boy as tough as nails, who would learn to survive and conquer.  The beautiful boy with life dancing in his eyes and the dimple in his cheek.  His giggle lights up a room.  The boy who grabs life with his whole being.

This is a story of a match made in heaven, how brave Stevie found his way home to his Lanie.  His Lanie with love in her eyes for him, his save haven and his voice in his voiceless world.

Lelanie first held Stevie as a six-week-old infant.  Her friend was Stevie’s place-of-safety mother.  She fell in love with this gorgeous bundle as she assisted her friend during the day, caring for Stevie.  The time came for Stevie to be moved to a place-of-safety centre with other small children and babies.  Lelanie realised that Stevie needed family.  She would be his family.  Regular visits and weekend sleepovers started, during which Lelanie and Stevie grew closer and closer, forming a strong bond of love.

Parting became difficult and made them cry.  Sometimes Stevie refused to let go of his Lanie.  “Stevie, Lanie will not come back if you cry,” reprimanded the aunties at the centre.  Lelanie picked him up and held him close to her heart.  She pressed a kiss on his head and whispered, “I will always come back.  I love you Stevie”.

“Be brave now, Stevie, our Warrior”.  He bit his lip and walked back to his room with a tear still visible on his cheek.  “Lanie will come back”.  And she always did … till one day.  Things started to change.  This time, Stevie’s Lanie came to fetch him to come home forever.  His Lanie … his mommy!

The strong courageous lady will not tell you of the many sleepless nights and how she prayed, “Father, use me, but help me, please.  I am scared”.  She will not tell you how she cried, seeing her broken boy and feeling helpless, “How will he survive this?”  She will not tell you about her uphill battle providing a voice for this child, about how ordinary aspects like obtaining a birth certificate became an extraordinary accomplishment within a child-unfriendly system.  She chooses to smile and say, “I’ll do it all over again.”  She never complains, she just loves her boy.  Then one unexpected day, brave Stevie placed his hand in his Lanie’s hand and said, “Mommy, I love you”.  These are the moments which made all the battles, fights, tears and sleepless nights just melt away.

It is amazing grace. God answered her prayers for a child that would touch her life and heart forever.  God saw this magnificent boy without loving arms to comfort him and it touched His heart.  Lelanie, go well courageous lady.  Love your boy with all your heart.  Go brave Stevie, grow up to be strong and happy and keep on grabbing life with passion and joy.

By Henlie Holm

Women, the foundation of the SAVF

Women’s day … women’s month … a female power which runs like a golden thread throughout the history of the SAVF over the years. The women who had the courage, under the most precarious circumstances of a war, to create an organisation with new vision and energy, to alleviate the circumstances of children, families and the aged. They did not only dream but also acted, they did not call on a DSD or the kindness of others, but put shoulder to the wheel and made plans by themselves. Since 1904 the monuments exist in the SAVF of women, who addressed the need of the day.  The SAVF faces the challenge to take forward the farsightedness, courage, and drive of these women, for the generations to come and who are dependent on the organisation for service.

We salute our women leaders!



In SA, 9 August is Women’s Day and the month of August is National Women’s Month. This is an opportunity to celebrate women’s achievements and the important role that women of all races and religions have played and continue to play in the South African society.

Muhammad Ali Jinnah once said: “No nation can rise to the height of glory unless your women are side by side with you”

Women are in so many instances the core of their families. The person that will support, care, pray, sustain, mentor and fight for their family members.

The SAVF is a living example of the power and endurance of women. Against all odds, this organisation was established in a time of war, poverty, illnesses, and animosity, even amongst their own countrymen.

They had no manual or guideline of how to establish and develop an organisation that will bring hope in a time of despair. The only thing they had, was faith, a motivation, and a vision to start making a difference to people’s hardships. How ironic, that one of the first facilities that were built, was the home for unmarried mothers – women who could easily have been pushed away by society, but who were taken care of by these women.

The SAVF can hardly exist without the power and strength of women. We see them in our management structures, as personnel – professional, administrative and domestic staff, as the volunteers that are willing to do the work nobody else wants to do; and our women donors who know that to give is often more valuable than to have.

We are proud of and blessed by the number of women that the SAVF can bring hope to by means of social assistance, therapy, housing, protection, and development. They form part of the 274,420 individuals we render a service to.

This is the time for all women in the SAVF to embrace womanhood, to take the best from the past, to celebrate the women in our services and to continue to believe in the difference we can make in a country with many challenges and against all odds………….

We salute you!