South Africa

Life is difficult for children with disabilities in South Africa. There is virtually nowhere for them to receive the support that they need in their special circumstances. One of South Africa's few facilities for children with disabilities is the Elim Home. This is a support centre that provides professional and loving full daycare.


Multiple partners working together

This project is operated by the Evangelical Mission in Solidarity (EMS) organisation, and Mission 21 contributes to its financing. The local partner organisation is the Moravian Church in South Africa.


Support tailored to the children's needs

The Elim Home was founded in 1963 for the particular purpose of helping disabled children for whom there were no institutions to provide support during the apartheid era. Although support facilities were available for "white" children with mental disabilities during that period, there were no such institutions for "coloured" children in the same situation. Even today, such facilities are very few in number – so children come here from within a radius of 700 kilometers. The Elim Home aims not only to care for the children but also to give them targeted support. Residents here learn basic skills that will enable them to carry out everyday activities with greater independence.


Integration into everyday life

This home is located in the former Elim Mission Station, about 220 kilometers east of Cape Town. There are now daycare facilities in Gansbaai and Bredasdorp where therapists as well as specially trained parents offer support for the children from Monday to Friday. This new programme means that more children can be reached and at the same time, they remain integrated in their family and social structures.