The recent UWI appeal focused on three main areas of work being done by Christian Aid partner organisations: support for rural landless, responding to the HIV crisis and post-apartheid reconciliation.
The rural landless
South Africa has one of the widest gaps between rich and poor in the world. After years of colonial and apartheid rule, most land still remains in the hands of a wealthy minority.
Many poor rural families have lived on the same homestead for generations, but had their land taken from them during colonialism or apartheid.
The Association for Rural Advancement (AFRA) helps these families and others to make legal claims for land to be returned to them under the South African government's land reform programme.
Once they have received land, AFRA helps the families to access the support they need to tend the land effectively. AFRA also helps people fight unfair evictions and keeps them informed about their housing rights.
Reconciliation and Development
Pietermaritzburg Agency for Social Awareness (PACSA) is an independent Christian organisation supporting poor and marginalised communities.
PACSA’s activities include research, education and training, spiritual reflection and campaigns on issues such as rape, domestic violence, post-apartheid reconciliation, trade and HIV.
One main focus is helping church and community leaders understand complex economic and political issues, so they can influence decision-makers. PACSA also runs economic literacy courses to help people understand the impact that trade and economic policies have on ordinary poor South Africans.
More than one in five adults in South Africa are HIV positive, and the illness has left more than a million children orphaned.
Thandanani Children’s Foundation supports these orphans and other vulnerable children in the Pietermaritzburg area, ensuring that they have food, shelter, access to education and emotional support.
Wola Nani supports HIV+ women and their children in Cape Town and nearby townships.
As well as providing care and counselling, Wola Nani runs skills development and income generation programmes to help HIV+ people make a living through craft production.
They also speak out about HIV issues – raising awareness, fighting stigma and helping to make sure that people living with HIV can access the services they need.
During the year long appeal, the churches of the Union of Welsh Independents raised over £200,000 to fund this vital work.
To read more about what has been achieved so far in South Africa click here.
Help us to continue supporting our partners in South Africa by giving a donation. However small the amount it will help to change lives.