Katherine and Danny Brink of Table View are having renovations done to an old farm house in Morning Star, which they want to turn into a safe home for abused and neglected children.
Ms Brink, who runs the Little Brinks NPO said seeing the safe house become a reality would be a dream come true.
“Our dream is to make sure every child knows they have the potential to be great and they deserve a chance at a healthy and better life, and we will try our best to make that happen. That is how we decided to open a safe house where we will house up to 20 kids at a time and try our best to help them overcome the trauma they have been through,” she said.
Little Brinks was started in 2008 when the couple saw how many children were going without food and proper clothing while visiting the social services organisation Badisa in Elsies River.
“We were shocked to see most grannies there were waiting for food for their grandchildren who were left with them. We decided to hold a Christmas party where 100 children could come and get a present and meal. The following year, we had 150 children and the following 175 children, and now we are on 250 children,” she said.
Little Brinks also feeds 250 school children a day during the school term as well as 27 families. They also feed four pensioners from an old age home.
Ms Brink said for as long as she could remember, she had wanted to be a mother. Finding out she couldn’t have children of her own had only intensified her love for other people’s children.
She and her husband, who have been married for 10 years, endured four miscarriages in seven years, and eventually the couple adopted.
“Now I have four amazing little souls that call me mom,” said Ms Brink.
After starting a soup kitchen through Little Brinks at Buren High School in Brooklyn this year she realised how many children were in need in the community and it spurred her own to make the safe house a reality.
She applied for an NPO number and is currently waiting to be registered.
“The safe house will start out as an emergency home where children can stay for up to 90 days. Danny and I are registered as safe parents with the Department of Social Development. We will be working closely with the department of Social Development as well as other government and private organisations during this time. The safe house will start at a later stage when we get a bit bigger,” she said.
She said another Table View couple, who are also registered as safe parents, had volunteered there services at the safe house as well.
“Danny and I are doing all of this out of our own pockets. We’ll have volunteers to begin with until our funding and financing looks better,” she said.
Although she admits the safe house is a work in progress she has faith it will be a success.
“We are trying to raise funds to open as soon as possible and are collecting any building material people no longer need as well as washing lines, bedding, clothing, towels, cupboards, long life food and household materials. Cash donations are always welcome and we are looking for R100 pledges to help pay the costs of the safe house,” said Ms Brink.
* If you would like to learn more about Little Brinks or donate to the safe house email Katherine Brink at littlebrinks.co.za or call 084 871 1324.