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Saartjie Baartman Centre for Women and Children

Athlone
Cape Town
Western Cape

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48m² Prefabricated Therapeutic Library

Date Launched

21 February 2023

Location

Athlone,

Cape Town

No of children

70 children

Year started

1999

Impact achieved

• When the Saartjie Baartman Centre for Women and Children opened in 1999, it was the first multi one-stop centre for abused women and children in the country, with a substance abuse unit in addition to the short- and medium-term residential care, where women and their children can stay for a period of four to 10 months.

• They have incorporated outreach programmes into their work, running child protection programmes in schools and prevention and awareness interventions in communities.

• The team approached Breadline Africa to assist in creating a library that would include a space for psycho-social support – because reading, quiet time and journaling are all a part of the healing tools employed by the centre.

• The 48m² prefabricated therapeutic library contains a partitioned therapy room that will be used by the social workers to offer therapy in a calm and serene space.

• The library contains both children’s and adult books and materials, and spaces where women and children can come and enjoy the calm and serenity.

• This facility was donated by the Kolisi Foundation and centre director, Bernadine Bachar explained: “The Nikita Louis Serenity Hub is rooted in collaboration. This project offers a calm, tranquil space for survivors to receive therapy and pull up a couch, read a book with their children and escape. To Breadline Africa, thank you so much for helping Lauren with her vision to provide this space to help the most vulnerable members of society.”

• The family of Nikita Lewis (24), who was murdered by an abusive former partner, said they were honoured that the centre and the Kolisi Foundation had decided to name the Serenity Hub after her, ensuring Lewis’s name will always be remembered. She had sought assistance at the SBCWC in 2015, but was murdered a month later on 9 October 2015, less than 300m from the centre.

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