The Door of Hope Orphanage is a safe haven for 32 children where volunteers can assist in numerous ways!
About the Program
Door of Hope was established by Mama Gladys, a person of amazing selflessness and a huge heart. She saw a need, had to do something about it, and started taking children in from the streets some 20 years ago. Orphaned or abandoned children would find their way to Mama Gladys who would take them in and care for them as her own. Currently there are 32 children from ages 1-20 years living with her in the orphanage where they are one big family.
Volunteers can contribute to lightening the burden of looking after so many children, and offer them individual attention - a rarity in such a big family! As well as the younger children, you will be bonding with teenagers and chat about those growing-up things teenagers want to discuss.
Volunteer working hours will be flexible, as the older children have school until 2pm. You will help around the house with cleaning and chores, and you will also prepare afternoon activities for when the children come home.
It may be something lots of us take for granted, but individual focus on and attention to these children, living as they do in such a large family, means the world to them. The simplest things like teaching them the English alphabet, counting, names of colours and playing games with them will be rewarding tasks for both volunteer and child.
Volunteers will help the older school-going kids with their homework in the afternoons. You can help them with assignments and converse with them in English so that they can practice. Whether you consider your ‘strong point’ to be maths, English, biology or any other subject; your knowledge must be shared! These kids are thirsting for input.
Volunteers will be expected to organise fun activities that will both entertain the kids and improve their social skills. Be creative and come prepared!
Even though Mama Gladys has several staff members helping her cook and clean, your help will still be invaluable. You can also get involved in general office administration (organising the children’s files etc.) and numerous other tasks. You will thus gain an insider’s view of the current situation at Door of Hope, and be able to use it to formulate goals for their future.
Some children need special attention because they are behind with their educational development. Volunteers can help by teaching them reading and writing skills, to maximise their future opportunities.
Volunteers will generally work from 11AM - 5PM including the following tasks.
The Eastern Cape and the surroundings of Port Elizabeth show a large variety of natural beauty and make PE a great central place to visit the variety of South Africa. To the East you will find the Wild coast (former Transkei and Ciskei) which is mostly rural and undeveloped, but closer you will find Addo Elephant Park and great coastal villages such as Port Alfred. To the North you will find the great Karoo; a semi desert area with wide open spaces, large nature areas and long open roads with historical places such as Graaff Reinet, the Baviaanskloof Wilderness and much more. To the East towards Cape Town, you will be amazed by the Tsitsikamma National Park, holiday villages such as Plettenberg Bay, Knysna and natures Valley or the surf mecca of Jeffrey’s Bay. This gives you plenty to see and visit while you are here.
During the weekends or after work there are a few beautiful places in Port Elizabeth as well that you can visit. Such as SAMREC, where you have the biggest penguin colony in the world, Sardinia bay, or catch a boat and go sandboarding on the Sunday river.
One of our coordinators will pick you up from the airport when arriving. This is included in the volunteer program fee. There will also be a driver everyday who'll bring you to the projects.
Our volunteer house is situated in Humewood, Port Elizabeth
The volunteer house lies in the popular beach front area of Humewood, and is only a 5 minute walk away from the beach. Shops, beachfront cafés, restaurants and access to other facilities are all within easy reach. It’s the perfect location to enjoy the beach after work or during weekends. The volunteer house offers spacious living conditions and is shared with other volunteers. Depending how busy it is, you'll share a bedroom.
Three meals per day are included and we work on a set menu per week. Volunteers do the cooking while we provide the groceries and together we set a menu per week.
There is free coffee, tea and cordial juice available at any time.
For breakfast you will have toast, fruit, yoghurt, cereal and/or eggs. For lunch you can have sandwiches with cheese, marmalade, cold meats or other spreads.