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Nkosi’s Haven bakes bread daily to donate to out reach projects

Nkosi’s Haven Mattress and bed store burns down

artsINSIDEOUT 2013!

by Nkosis Haven

Another year has come and gone with our amazing artsINSIDEOUT team. For two years running they have come to work with our children and mothers creating art, music, theatre and so much more! With a focus on building self worth and respect, they yet again gave our Nkosi’s Haven family some great experience and created […]

Nkosi Johnson’s 12 Year Memorial

by Nkosis Haven

On Saturday June 1st, 2013 we celebrated the life of Nkosi Johnson. Through song, dance and prayer we keep him alive in our hearts and thank him for the inspiration he provided us all!

Pajama Party thanks to Aids Fonds and 4Life!

by Nkosis Haven

Just in time for the South African winter our kids, moms and caregivers received warm, fuzzy pajamas, robes and slippers to bundle up in! Many thanks and gratitude for the generous donations from both Aids Fonds and 4Life Research.

We’re hiking!

by Nkosis Haven

On the 1st May, our current volunteers from Germany and Guatemala used the opportunity of having a public holiday and took our residents for a hike. Everybody who was older than 12 years was more than welcome to join. Round about 20 kids, some of our caregivers and the volunteers left the property at 10 […]

Food and Blankets for Nkosi’s Haven Vukani

by Nkosis Haven

With the help of the Soweto Gospel Choir, who has adopted Nkosi’s Haven as their benefiting charity, we have been able to extend our reach beyond Nkosi’s Haven into the surrounding environment and built up the Nkosi’s Haven Vukani, which means “outreach”. (Please also look at Projects > Nkosi’s Haven Vukani) In the beginning of […]

Birthday joy for Nkosi’s Haven kids – Be part of it!

by Nkosis Haven

Our birthdays are supposed to be special days, especially for children. But how do you celebrate the birthdays of more than 100 kids living at Nkosi’s Haven? Thanks to an initiative of the day care student Daniella Ramos, an birthday celebration is held every first weekend of each month to celebrate the birthdays of the […]

Standard Bank Donates Wendy Houses

by Nkosis Haven

Perfectly on time as an Easter Surprise we received a donation from Standard Bank! The kids were all over the moon when they saw the two new colorful Wendy Houses. With their bright colors they fit perfectly in the Nkosi’s environment. Our many thanks go to Standard Bank! Your support is highly appreciated!

Christmas Day at Nkosi’s Village

by Nkosis Haven
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sumaya hisham-6435Children at Nkosi’s Haven opening their present on Christmas Day with Gail playing ‘Mother Christmas’.  

“The generosity of people never ceases to a amaze me with so many getting involved by taking the time out to shop for a present, wrap and label it  – making it all so very personal and special for each child, who’s faces just light up when their name is called to ‘fetch their presents from Father Christmas!”  


We are exceptionally grateful to Nina Venjakob who did her Annual Christmas Present drive to her entire data base – the responses was overwhelming  – thank  you all so very much.  


Mark and Nikki Garden who  annually twist the arms of everyone at Edward Nathan Sonnenbergs and Webber Wentzel Bowens firm of Attorneys delivered over 145 presents to the Haven which were brought down to the Village for Christmas Day  –  thank  you all so, so much for always remembering and caring for the children of Nkosi’s Haven  –  you are stunning.

Eriger ALWAYS remember the children and over 145 ‘lucky packets’ had been made up, relevant to age with stunning, practical goodies in and of course ‘sweeties’.

And many a private person dropped off presents for children of certain age groups or specific children that they have met during the year  – thank you!!

Party Farm

by Nkosis Haven

The Nkosi Kids were invited for the third year to Max and Merle Viljoens Feathers and Fur Party Farm in Bredell.

NKOSI_2011_021Merle spent part of her childhood at the JCA and Strathyre childrens homes and has over the many years I have known her taught me a lot about giving and sharing. Her dream has always been to have farm animals and to build a party farm. Her main business is Triple M Kennels and Cattery for animals boarding, but this has spilled over into many other permanent enclosures housing many rescue cats and the newest two enclosures housing dogs that were rescued from the Bapsfontien squatter camp when it was torn down earlier this year and have been unable to find homes.

Most of the farm animals are also rescue animals and presently there are cows, sheep, goats, miniature horses, geese, rabbits probably over a 100 chickens, and of course Betsy the donkey. Merle has done an incredible job taming and keeping the farm animals tame, and this eventually led to the party farm.

This year there were over 40 kids and as usual the main attraction was the water slide. I was amazed at the under 5 year old kids who had no fear of the water and enjoyed it as much as the older kids. The biggest problem was that they did not have the body weight or the co-ordination to slide down it, so we improvised and ended up pulling them down with a rope. So long as they were able to hold onto the rope, it worked well. The 6 to 12 year olds all eventually got the swing of things and flew down. Best slider this year was definitely Minently followed by Petros. Next popular was the trampoline followed by the swings.

Thabiso was really great with the smaller kids, and whenever I looked, he was pushing them on the swings or was on the trampoline with them. Johanna was unbelievable. She controlled the water slide most of the day with either Fatima or myself, and the day would not have run as smoothly without her help. Zetu and Zintle were a huge help preparing and dishing up lunch. We again had hotdogs. I know it a bit boring, but it’s easy as there is no cooking involved, and it’s easy to heat the sausages (I use Merle’s kitchen in the house).

Keeping the Nkosi Johnson dream alive: A World Aids Day message from the Chairman of Nkosi’s Haven

by Nkosis Haven


Dear friends,

As many of you will know I have been passionately involved with Nkosi’s Haven for the last couple of years and the experience has been both uplifting and heart-breaking.

Nkosi’s Haven was formed in 1999 by Gail Johnson, the foster mother of Nkosi Johnson, who at the age 11 made one of the bravest and most moving speeches at the Durban hosted, 13th International Aids Conference in 2000, and became one of the key symbols of HIV/AIDS activism.  Our mission is to provide a safe and nurturing home environment for mothers, their children and orphans left destitute by HIV/AIDS.

We are not an orphanage

We have created a vibrant and secure village environment in which children are cared for by their “foster” mothers in order to receive the nurturing, values and love that are essential for the development of a child.  Whilst many of these children carry the burden of unspeakable pasts, they are given all the support and care that is needed for them to heal these wounds and to make the transition into a normal adult life.

We are not a hospice where people with HIV/AIDS come to prepare to die

We believe that with the right interventions, AIDS is not a terminal disease, but rather a chronic but manageable disease.  It is critical however that a treatment programme that focuses on lifestyle, medication, diet and overall health is key to making this transition.  Many of the people suffering from this disease or the effects of it carry with them huge social stigma, have in many cases been traumatised and abused, and have been reinforced with the belief that they have no future.  We provide an environment to deal with these past traumas and to create a safe and positive environment to give people dignity and hope.

At present there are 182 residents spread across the 2 houses in Berea and the village in Alan Manor, comprising 29 mothers and 153 children, of which approximately half are orphaned.