This Association focuses on the importance of the family. We firmly believe that more and more families should be raised, equipped and supported to look after babies and toddlers in crisis. It is important that every child in need should have the opportunity to experience the love and stability provided within the family unit. By actively raising more families, crisis children will have the opportunity to become part of a family again – belonging to a home he/she can call their own.
TPoSA provides wonderful parents and special homes where an abundance of emotional, physical and spiritual care is given to babies and toddlers. Our association coordinates the admission and placement of children with individual families. We render a support service to place of safety parents as well as social workers from various welfare organisations. The ages of the children we are caring for varies from premature to eighteen years. Although we do not admit new children older than 2 years of age.
The children admitted by TPoSA are abandoned babies, babies available for adoption (parentless babies) as well as HIV positive babies; toddlers who were abused, toddlers who are HIV positive or orphaned due to HIV Aids, as well as sick babies and toddlers (Hydrocephalus, Down syndrome, tracheotomy children and Spina-bifida children).
TPoSA provides a dual service. Firstly they receive many crisis babies (either from hospitals or the police) who are usually abandoned, place them in an available place of safety family and consequently appoint an organisation to do the statutory work. Secondly they are contracting their place of safety parents to other organisations who are in need of Place of Safety parents. These organisations are very keen on using parents registered with our association, since they are known to be well prepared and trained for the challenges they may face. Often a temporary placement (called Place of Safety) will develop into a long-term placement (called Foster care). Often these parents then commit themselves to looking after these children on a long-term basis – which can even result in an adoption!
It is amazing to see how a child in crisis, can experience a happy ending by being part of a forever family.
The vision of our association is to provide the Place of Safety parents with as much emotional and physical support as possible. These families will only continue with their exceptional service if they are supported on an emotional level. Getting attached to children, experiencing loss and death, is very traumatic. This Association realises the importance to support the parents dealing with all these experiences.
It is however a very costly service these parents/families are rendering. Providing disposable nappies, formula milk and other baby or toddler equipment has a huge impact on the budget of a family. Children often get sick and desperately need medical care. This burden also needs to be carried by the Place of Safety parents.
Many families looking after HIV positive children accommodate up to six children at a time in their homes. These children are sick and in need of intensive medical treatment. Many trips to clinics, hospitals or physicians have to be made and lots of medication has to be purchased, to adequately treat these vulnerable young children.
TPoSA wants to support their parents on a practical level. We negotiate many services free of charge (doctors, occupational therapists, physio therapists, nursing sisters) but the parents cover medication costs. We also provide the children with second hand clothing and equipment; milk formula and general food products donated to the association.
TPoSA is also constantly faced with changing circumstances in South Africa. To keep up with changes we are also changing. In 2007 we identified the need to accommodate more children with medical problems. We then started the Tshwane Haven. We admit sick babies and children with medical problems. The Haven is known as our Intensive Care Unit and is located in Waterkloof in Pretoria and can accommodate up to 16 sick kids.
In 2012 we started our Nurseries (we needed to start High Care Units to take in babies and children that need a little bit of extra special care):
- Swallows Nest : Is the home of Jeanette Birrell and accommodates up to 6 babies. Jeanette specialise in taking care of Premature babies. She is also the Managing Director of TPOSA for the last 14 years. This home is located in Waterkloof Heights.
The rest of our families that are located all over Pretoria, Soshanguve, Mamelodi, Nellmapius and Centurion are our general ward. These families normally open their own homes to 1-3 babies or toddlers at a time.
Our audited financial statements and annual reports are available on request.
Thank you for your interest in our organisation and making a difference in the lives of our crisis children.