The CDP Trust is an NGO in Bertrams, Johannesburg, that is working tirelessly to help those in the community that are too vulnerable to help themselves. They operate on private funding from Europe and they assist refugees and abused women and children to survive and have a chance at rebuilding their lives.
They use arts and crafts as a catalyst for disclosure and healing. Colour is therapeutic. It has the power to rehabilitate and heal. CDP Trust uses it as a balm on the wounds of the people who come to them for help.
Recently, they brought in groups of children from Kids Haven in Benoni for a holiday programme. I went to the concert afterwards to celebrate their artworks and achievements.
It was my first visit to Kids Haven, and the experience will stay with me forever.
Kids Haven is a shelter in Benoni that takes in children off the street in Johannesburg. As I stood in the hall looking at more than 500 busy children, I realised that not one of them had anywhere else to go, or anybody to turn to. All of them have some aweful tale of trauma to tell. No child will simply leave its parents. Some have lost both parents to illness, others have run to Johannesburg to escape unmentionable horrors at home.
All of them crave love.
Afterwards I was chatting to a friend of mine about the experience. She seemed frustrated that the Government is not doing more for children like these. The truth is that there are just not enough resources for the growing problem. Each one of us is sitting hoping in some vague way that somebody, somewhere, is taking care of the problem, because that is what moral society does.
In reality, there are scores and scores of children like this around us everywhere, that the resources do not reach, for whatever reason.
I went in and presented a 20 minute colour magic show for them. It cost me a little bit of my time and a piece of cloth. It meant the world to them.
I am 37 years old and I am still blessed to have both of my loving parents. The only thing that seperates me from any of the children in that room is the fact that I happened to be born in the right place at the right time. Every day I am more thankful for that lucky accident.
Do you have kids who are moaning that they do not yet have the latest Playstation? Step out into your community and go and meet the children in the shelters and homes around you. Contribute. Donate. Get involved. Change the world you live in.
Have a great day in full colour!