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Category Archives: The Reporter

A father-figure in spirit

A father-figure in spirit

“Daddy” Lt. Owen Mutize

Last year Lindiwe Ngcobo* matriculated with three distinctions, thrilling “Daddy” Owen, formally known as Lt. Owen Mutize. After quite a short time at Carl Sithole he endeared himself so much to the kids, so desperate for a family, that they started referring to him as Daddy. This is how “our children” think of Salvation Army personnel so that they morph into family.

Lindiwe and her sister Tandi* came to this home in 2016, having been badly neglected in a foster home. When their mother died they were removed and brought to the sanctuary of Carl Sithole. Like most children here, they had no self-confidence when they arrived. Both girls are very bright said Lt. Owen. Lindiwe is a very avid reader – a real bookworm. She’s quiet, reserved and extremely focused, she is a real inspiration to the other girls here, most of whom have already had their dreams shattered and look at her in awe. I often hear the other girls say “I want to be like Lindiwe.”

She’s now doing a three-year degree in Public Relations and Communication at the University of Johannesburg, where she is a resident. She comes home to Carl Sithole for her holidays, where Tandi is still at school and doing very well, so they have wonderful catch-up times.

*Names changed to protect identities.

The art of handling success

The art of handling success

Elizabeth* came to Joseph Baynes Children’s home in Pietermaritzburg as an orphan of just two years old. A happy and cheery child, she always excelled at school and it was no surprise when she passed matric last year with a university entrance. She is now at Pretoria University doing a three-year degree in Creative Arts.… Continue Reading

Kids face terror-loaded transition

Kids face terror-loaded transition

There’s a saying that’s attributed to some long-ago movie star “Old age is not for sissies!” Yet, in this day and age the challenges that face the young, who’ve come through massively disadvantaged backgrounds, are terror-filled. Nobody understands these more than The Salvation Army who have nurtured many such young people throughout their lives. Our… Continue Reading

Hope for the future

Hope for the future

Passionate and enthusiastic, Lt. Owen believes everyone is born with hope and a need to make a difference, sadly this hope is too often crippled in life by lack of opportunity. The Salvation Army has an excellent reputation for giving our children the kind of caring and attention that makes them excel. Of course, this… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Spring 2021

The Reporter – Spring 2021

The heartbeat of 80/156 broken hearts, now joined in a joyous reach for a good life, creates a symphony that vibrates through the Carl Sithole Centre in Klipspruit, Soweto. It was named after this Major of The Salvation Army who devoted his life to bettering the lives of young people and so help them rise… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Autumn 2021

The Reporter – Autumn 2021

When the Cape’s forest fires get out of hand in a blaze, the sight is spectacular. When the blaze in the informal settlement of Masiphumelele, near FishHoek, took hold before Christmas it was terrifying. There can be few experiences worse than seeing your entire life go up in flames. Frightened and helpless, residents watched as… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Autumn 2020

The Reporter – Autumn 2020

Lisa* was a lovely young mother of three when a gang of males decided to have their ‘fun’ with her and set about raping her for what seemed like hours. Her tears and screams did not stop them from continuing to have their enjoyment. Inevitably their crime resulted in a pregnancy. Nine months later Precious*… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Spring 2019

The Reporter – Spring 2019

It was glorious, warm Highveld weather − perfect to celebrate Mandela Day. There was a sense of excitement as tables were brought to the front of our Salvation Army headquarters in Braamfontein, Johannesburg. Then Karina Haynes and her friendly staff arrived from the Parktonian Hotel (our neighbour) with two enormous, piping hot pots of soup… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Autumn 2019

The Reporter – Autumn 2019

The trip into the heart of Northern KZN takes you through some glorious scenery – the majestic Amajuba Mountains, carpeted with pink, mauve and white Cosmos as Easter approaches, through flatter, once-rich, coal mining areas into Vryheid. Then deep into the sparsely populated, undeveloped really rural Zululand, steeped in centuries-old traditions and today’s scourge –… Continue Reading

The Reporter – Spring 2018

The Reporter – Spring 2018

When a mother and her kids have been through the trauma of abuse, and are still in a state of shock and fear, when even a slightly raised voice can turn them into quivering wrecks, their transformation when they come to Carehaven is almost miraculous. At this Salvation Army shelter for abused women and their… Continue Reading

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