diepsloot-surrounding-bona-lesedicov

Bona Lesedi Project

ACT Foundation’s main slogan is “ACT now!” – which urges people not to miss an opportunity to serve others and transform one’s life due to inertia!

Keeping in line with this philosophy, the ACT Foundation South Africa Board decided to get engaged with Bona Lesedi on a long term ongoing basis.

Bona Lesedi campus and office
Bona Lesedi campus and office

A little bit more about Bona Lesedi: The founders of the Bona Lesedi Project were moved by compassion for disabled people in Diepsloot following a survey which highlighted that 5% of the population is living with disabilities (physical, mental and profound). This led to the formation of the Centre in 1999 and Bona Lesedi was registered as a non-profit making organisation with the Department of Social Development on 9th May 2000. The core of the Project is a day care centre for people with disabilities. Those cared for, range from early childhood to adulthood.

A wide range of disabilities are catered for. Most of the children are mobile but many have physical problems in addition to an intellectual handicap. Some are emotionally disturbed and have behavioural problems on top of their primary handicap.

The centre is still in dire need of financial, material and administrative assistance. Government funds expenditure is very specific and only provides part of needed finances to render quality service to service users. To generate and supplement funding Bona Lesedi have gardening, bakery, art and recycling programs.

The gardening program is an income generating scheme initiated by the staff and students of Bona Lesedi, and is aimed at providing skills and training for individuals with intellectual impairment through growing vegetables in a tunnel garden. The food produced is used to provide meals for the members and also to generate some income for the centre.

Diepsloot surrounding Bona Lesedi
Diepsloot surrounding Bona Lesedi

To augment the Centre’s income generating platform, a mini bakery was opened in August 2011.  The bakery program is part of job creation for their members over 18 who are mentally impaired and volunteer workers who receive no salary. This provides freshly baked bread and other products to the community.  Unfortunately the project never really took off because of lack of skill, inadequate equipment and staff.

 

The impact of ACT Foundation assistance:

  • Immeasurable in the lives of those, in need of care.
  • Improvement in the quality of therapy received through extension of therapy room.
  • Service improvement to children with physical, psychological and emotional difficulties.
  • Providing safe and secure environment for service users.
  • Ongoing funding secured from the Department of Health Johannesburg District.
  • Job creation.
  • Improving financial stability of project.
  • Viable business planning on existing programs.
  • Improving visibility and marketability with subsequent funding escalation.

–  Bring awareness to plight of children with disabilities and the needs of their care givers.

Gardening program to generate income
Gardening program to generate income
Current therapy room
Current therapy room

As it is not viable to extend the existing tin structure and ACT Foundation are committed through fundraising to build a new therapy room.  The ACT Fusion concert was held in aid of building the therapy room and the building will soon commence.  With the proceedings of the concert a cost effective printer was bought with a year supply of printing cartridges.

Full scale renovations and training on the bakery had already commenced and bakery will open during November 2015.

Various other smaller projects are also under consideration and will be address long term.

As the ACT Foundation was created with the intention to celebrate the direct experience of inner transformation through selfless service and to inspire others to join us in creating a difference in the lives of those who are less fortunate than us, the Bona Lesedi project is a perfect fit to help them selflessly, who are in turn are helping others selflessly.

SHARING IS CARING