The Women's Shelter
Usindiso Ministries provides temporary accommodation for abused women and
their children on both the first and second floors. Each floor is registered to
accommodate 60 persons, which gives the shelter a capacity for 120 persons
including their children. Usindiso Ministries provides basic needs for each
woman and child, which includes accommodation, food, toiletries, nappies and
clothing. These women are referred to us by the police, nearby hospitals, other
institutions or they hear about us by word of mouth and arrive on their own.
Our social work department offers counselling, individual and group therapy
and discussions. They also assist the women to apply for ID books and grants,
where necessary. It is the social work department that interviews the ladies
when they first come in to the shelter and determines each woman’s needs and
works out a program for each one that will be followed during the course of her
stay at Usindiso. This program will be updated and amended during her follow up
sessions with the social worker.
The children are also catered for and attend either our nursery school or are
placed into a formal school if the child is not attending school already.
Workshops are held to create awareness of HIV and Aids, Human Rights and
their rights as women. Our programmes include Life Skills, Skills for Life,
Handcrafts, and we assist the women to find employment and to become whole -
spirit, soul and body.
Our babies under two years attend the Baby Day Care during the day (Monday to
Friday) when their moms are attending counselling, workshops or going to skills
training. This programme is supervised by the social workers and nursery school
The children with the mothers are from newborn upwards and the number can be
anything up to around 45. Boys are accommodated up to the age of eight years and
are then transferred to a nearby boys' shelter - during this time the mother is
encouraged to be involved in her boy's life.
The length of stay is officially 3 to 6 months, but this is assessed during
the follow up sessions with the social worker.
We are situated in the old "pass office" at 80 Albert Street, in downtown
Johannesburg, South Africa. In the days of apartheid, before 1994, our African
brothers and sisters had to have a "pass" to be able to enter a city or town.
Now the building is used by Usindiso Ministries to uplift people who have been
abused and emotionally bruised and to help them to regain their self-worth,
confidence and to be able to stand on their own and be a contributing member of
For more information on the history of the building - click
Baby Day Care Centre
During April 2011, Baobabes' Caryl Kelly worked hard at renovating the Baby
Day Care Centre with funds that were generously donated by Societe Generale. The
facility that accommodates our little ones Monday to Friday now looks beautiful
and bright in the play area and restful in the area where the children rest and
Here the little ones under 2 years spend the day, when their moms are going
to training, counselling or to attend workshops, etc., or are already working.
The babies are cared for by qualified staff and child minder trainees, to ensure
that they are very well looked after and they thrive and develop as expected.
|Usindiso's brightly decorated