Children At The Forefront

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A History of Thandanani Children`s Foundation (1989-2009)

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Thandanani Association was formed in 1990 by a group of volunteers wanting to respond to the needs ofabout 70 children abandoned and living a life in the shadows at Edendale Hospital in Pietermaritzburg. By 1996, thanks to the efforts of these volunteers, these children had all been relocated to more appropriate places of care, but a new threat had emerged: HIV/Aids, which was having a devastating impact on families and children. Recognising this, Thandanani shifted its focus and began facilitating community based care and support for orphans and other vulnerable children. Relaunching itself as Thandanani Children`s Foundation, the organisation began to recruit and train volunteers in communities surrounding Pietermaritzburg to identify and respond to the needs of vulnerable children within their community. This was a pioneering strategy at the time, and Thandanani has remained at the `cutting edge`" of community based child care ever since. This book explores the history of Thandanani and traces the organisation`s response to the changing needs and circumstances of `"children in distress`". It follows the journey from an association of caring volunteers to a formally structured non-profit organisation. The book highlights the challenges that transitions bring, and reveals some of the many obstacles charitable organisations face in trying to ensure their growth and sustainability."

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Matthew Le Cordeur, Thandi Davies