The Initiative Partnerschaft für Afrika e.V. – engagierte Menschen für eine gemeinsame Sache – was formed about eight years ago as an association of engaged humans in Germany, who would like to support equally engaged humans in Africa in their valuable work. Initially, the occasion was Friederike Heidenhof’s three-month consulting assignment with the project partners in northern Tanzania.
The support in establishing the public relations work of the local help and development organization AAIDRO was the starting point for further promoting the projects and programs. Since then, the focus of the work has been on children. The aim is to give disadvantaged children a chance for a self-determined life, especially through education.
The work of the association “Partnership for Africa e.V.” is financed by three of the initiators by paying the administrative costs privately. This means that every donation without deductions directly benefits the projects. Besides handicapped children, it is especially the HIV orphans who need our support.
Programme for children and adolescents at risk
“Vulnerable children” is the term behind which all the vulnerability of children is concealed. Children are “at risk” above all when they lack a caring parental home. This can have several causes: either through the death of the parents, but also because they are imprisoned for crimes. In addition, alcohol and frustration often lead to violence in the families, which can also be directed against the children. In addition, there are early pregnancies of young people who have children at a very early age – at 13, 14 or 15.
What can we do?
With our donations we can provide urgent emergency aid to such children and enable them to attend school. We can also help them to have a dignified life by financing modest but clean housing, buying a bed or clothes and food. We can prevent these young people from slipping into crime and prostitution on the streets because they have no other chance to survive without education.
Sr. Agreda and her staff do very important work at the grassroots level: in the slums, on the streets and under difficult conditions. Supporting their work is one of the most important ways to break the vicious circle of HIV and poverty. Orphans at risk later become teachers, doctors or computer experts who can then make their own contribution to the development of society. This is sustainable help.
Use of donations
We have formed a group of families, orphans and half-orphans whom we support with our donations. These families are regularly visited and cared for. Every half year we report about the current status and the changes that have taken place. The aim is to provide the children and young people with an education in school or handicrafts so that they can stand on their own two feet and, if necessary, support their siblings themselves. The following measures are necessary:
- Safe home, if possible care by family members or neighbours in the accustomed environment
- Emergency care in case of violence or assault, provision of a boarding school place / orphanage place
- Sufficient supply of food to relieve procurement pressure and make school attendance possible; medicines, hygiene articles, HIV test
- school fees, school uniform, books, school material, clothes, bed, shoes, transport
- If necessary, support for sick parents who are still alive but cannot care for the family.
- Relief for grandparents who are overburdened with the care of (small) children.
The donations are collected and the most urgent measure is taken. The composition of the group changes when, for example, a student has graduated and can stand on his own two feet. Then, depending on the size of the donation, new pupils are admitted to the group.
Thanks to our donations, 40 young people are currently attending a secondary school, college or other educational institution. A further 20 families are supported by the above measures. The first graduates already have a degree in their pockets and can now take up a career. Older youths support their siblings.
Social responsibility for twin brothers in need
The two boys are twins and live on their own at the age of nine, after the mother died of HIV. The father is only occasionally present and then mostly drunk and violent. The brothers are like one egg to the other. There is only one distinctive feature that is contradictory to his name, which actually promises happiness: Goodluck has a clearly visible scar on his head. Godlisten is the image of his brother and the two are inseparable since the death of their mother.
The two boys are currently looked after by a neighbour who works in a bar and has a daughter herself. The room where they live is damp and mouldy, bed and mattress are also damp and musty. A donation made it possible to buy the essentials and enable the two of them to attend school. There is an urgent need for new accommodation, which also offers space for the caring neighbour, so that she can continue to look after the two boys in the long term. Our goal is to acquire the existing house for the two as a long-term livelihood and to rehabilitate, or elsewhere to build a measured accommodation. For this about 15.000 Euro are needed.
WUM Gruppe helps – you help too!
Goodluck and Godlisten are currently supported by donations from the companies FahnenRichter, Typodesign and WUM Design on the initiative of owner Denis Beutler. Last year, the WUM Gruppe decided not to give Christmas presents to clients and to send the money to the two boys instead. The support could improve the situation of the two decisively: they received the necessary means for living, school fees, school uniform and learning material. Clothes and a bed were also purchased.
Now the aim is to improve the general situation in life, which can hardly be described differently as “underground”. We therefore call for donations to be collected in order to provide the brothers with decent accommodation. Help us, here we can do something very meaningful together!