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Each One Help One – Hope SA

We often look up to those we regard as heroes, good Samaritans, the givers and kind-hearted, and often we end up finding those very qualities right within ourselves. Deciding to give up my business visions in the daily rat race and aiming to establish a larger scheme of assistance that would provide for the needy, destitute and abandoned communities and individuals is how I, Namritha Sivsanker, became the CEO of HOPE SA Foundation.

Growing up in challenging circumstances I often questioned my existence and my reason for my life on earth. Could it really be as basic and uninspiring as work, eat, sleep and repeat? For me this was not the answer. I always knew from then on that I was destined to play a bigger role in this lifetime. We are not here just to merely exist, but to serve a higher purpose and make a positive difference.

Being a single mum of adult twins, my family and pets make up my small personal world. The children and communities I work in, make up my bigger world.

My adverse childhood experiences motivated my dreams to one day open a place of safety for women and children. We lived through painful days with my abusive dad and I watched helplessly as my mum was being beaten. We all bore the pain and abuse from my dad, as my mum could not take us away and support three children by herself. I vowed to make a difference when I was older, to help people so that they may never feel the pain and sadness that we experienced.

Hope SA foundation was born in 2012 by visiting schools, libraries, community centers and orphanages to assist children and families with school shoes and bags, books to setup libraries and food and toys for orphanages. One may question how working amongst these communities could bring a sense of satisfaction. The daily queue of families collecting food supplies or the abundance of unemployment and lack of early learning and development centers…all of these are what has created the socio-economic problems we are currently faced with.

Looking forward, I see an extremely bright future for HOPE SA Foundation. It is with my current confidence and positive outlook that I strive to exponentially increase the number of beneficiaries I serve and increase the magnitude of the impact I make, by increasing my footprint and presence nationally.

Running my foundation on my own comes with its own challenges, however it is with this confidence that I move forward, knowing that my operations and initiatives are all coordinated and executed with the purpose I intend them too. These operations lend themselves to extremely long days and nights but this is exactly the type of dedication and long-term commitment that is growing my activities on an exponential level. When it comes to serving the communities with supplies – be it food, clothing, water – I am always able to provide these necessities and I am thankful for my blessings.

In Johannesburg, Hope SA foundation has worked tirelessly on the ground every day through Covid lockdown. We have assisted KZN families affected by the July unrest and floods through disaster relief efforts.

To date we have fed more than 500 000 hot meals, supported more than 100 000 people with food hampers, sanitary pads, masks, sanitizers and ‘safer women’ packs for victims of GBV.

In KZN 100 000 liters of water has been distributed.

Running daily operations, I am the biggest volunteer at Hope SA. My foundation has grown mostly by word of mouth and to a limited extent social media, which is primarily used for awareness and to gain the confidence of my current donors who can witness the impact their donations have made.

My future focus is to establish a network to implement sustainable projects with regards to providing services to communities in need – be it sanitation, water supply via boreholes and rainwater harvesting or initiating solar energy drives for communities and educational institutions. Here again, my plans have been put into motion already.

In KZN we have commenced with water solutions and HOPE SA has rolled out providing water storage tanks to schools, places of worship, central communal points for communities that are faced with limited to no water supply for periods now in excess of one month due to the floods in KwaZulu Natal. Our plans to help more communities with water, via the BOREHOLE project will bring water to thousands of people who cannot access clean, drinking water.

Hope SA Village for women and children, and an Early Childhood Development (ECD) center, together with a computer literacy center and skills development centre, is a project close to my heart. It is through education that our country will be uplifted. We need to ensure that children are equipped with the knowledge to right the wrongs that are currently facing our country. Education is a basic need and we must all put our resources and skill sets together to ensure we uplift our country.

My Motto

EACH ONE HELP ONE is a reminder that we can all start making a positive impact if we just start with ONE person. Be it a neighbor or a friend, focus on one at a time, and give them hope. Keep Hope Alive by living with gratitude, kindness and compassion. We are all walking a journey home together, and the common thread of human suffering should unite us and motivate us to be kind and caring towards each other.

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