SAVF Welfare Services

Vission/Vision: SAVF is a carrier of hope for people with social needs. As a registered welfare organisation SAVF renders social services to individuals and families within the community in order to empower them to improve the quality of life.

Services: SAVF renders welfare and welfare related services primarily in 5 provinces namely: Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and North West.

The services include Child and youth care, Social development, Family care and Care for the aged and people with disabilities.

In regards to child and youth care, we render statutory work, foster care, care in children homes and early child development.

The organisation also creates and implements developmental programs, job creation, and life enhancement programs.

We support individuals and families in combating poverty and also render support services to the aged and disabled persons, while our FAMNET program provides family information and support networks for effective parenting and strong healthy families.

SAVF renders services the past year from 185 facilities to approximately 400 994 individuals. More than 1, 2 million people were reached when taking the impact of services on families into account.

Past: SAVF was founded in 1904 in Pretoria on the initiative of Me. Georgiana Solomon in the company of Me. Annie Botha, the spouse of Genl. Louis Botha. The Organisation was “born” out of concern for the suffering and needs of people that followed the Second Anglo-Boer War. Job creation and women’s groups were launched in the following months by means of sewing projects. In 1905 the Armstrong Berning Home for the unmarried pregnant woman and traumatized girls was opened in Pretoria. This Home is still functioning today. The following decades saw the establishment of various Old Age homes, health services, youth hostels and nursery schools. In 1938 the first SAVF social worker was appointed. In 1978 SAVF took the first pioneering step by creating the first developmental social work post in Lichtenburg.

For 1112 years SAVF has been changing people’s lives for the better.

Present: SAVF prides itself in rendering an integrated, holistic, social welfare services. We’ve colored lives in the past 12 months in the following ways:

Children and Youth: SAVF programs involved more than 152 015 children in ECD centers, child protection programs, foster care supervision cases, school feeding schemes and awareness campaigns regarding the prevention of substance abuse, teenage pregnancy, and bullying.

Our five Child and Youth Care Centers serve as an environment where children in need of care are protected and counseled to regain self-respect and believe in human kind.

SAVF furthermore undertook research called “The Voices of Our Children” with the focus on the experiences of adolescents in related foster care. The results are used to direct social workers on the needs of adolescents within related foster care, which is often with grandparents.

One of our biggest challenges in SAVF is supporting the transition to our school leaving children in Children’s Homes into adult life. These children have to leave their Home at 18 years. Many other children in caseloads experience the same challenges, as parents or caregivers might not have the capacity to assist the young adults in this transition. For this purpose, SAVF established the SAVF Development and Empowerment Fund. The fund aims to financially support individuals, residing in the work area of SAVF and that do not have the funds at their disposal, with a developmental action or a career. The funds are utilized for, amongst others: boarding, registration for studies, study material such as books, equipment such as computers or tools and basic necessities such as clothing and transport.

Families: By definition, SAVF is a family organisation. Socio-economic empowerment projects have been part of the SAVF throughout its history. The development of Shelters in the past 18 years is proof of the lack of the basic livelihood of community members. It also provides a protected environment for the sufferers of family violence.

Parents: Both SAVF FAMNET and the SAVF Botswadi program focus on the development of parenting skills and provide a network of support to parents from different family structures. The past year more than 52 095 family members were involved in SAVF programs.

SAVF advocates that families are the core of society, in light of this; the organisation launched a media campaign in the beginning of this year by name of “Father's Network”. The aim of the campaign is to make society aware of the value of a father in the life of his child and to empower men to become involved in the lives of their children and families.

Older Persons: Services to approximately 48 139 older persons are rendered in communities by means of home-based care, luncheon clubs, kinship foster care supervision to grandparents and material support. We also care for 2 246 frail aged persons.

In the past, Old Age services focused mainly on residential care. Society dynamic, however, shifted the focus in contemporary times to care for the aged within a community, in their private residence or within a housing scheme. The expectation is that family, friends, service centers, social workers, and Homes render supporting services to the aged in their immediate vicinity. SAVF social workers satisfy this need through spiritual and cultural activities, inter-generational programs, information and educational programs, economic empowerment of older persons, health care, exercise, recreation, and transport.

Residential care, however, is still a very real need. SAVF render frail care services in Old Age homes throughout the 5 provinces. Often, the destitute senior citizen is removed from their environments and placed in our Homes where their dignity and self-respect is restored, while tending to their physical needs.

Affiliate Organisations: We make provision for emerging organisations to affiliate with SAVF. We provide support and guidance for these newly developing organisations into self-management and sustainability.

Special Projects: At present, SAVF is very excited as we have two wonderful projects in the pipeline. Firstly, the Food Voucher Project that will replace the usual distribution of food parcels. The second project consists of distributing from one of our empowerment facilities homemade baking goods to a well-known chain store.

Another project that is fully implemented and that we are very proud of is our SAVF Training Centre. The Centre trains 180 nursing and health care students per annum. The students do their practical training in our old age homes.

Volunteers and Employees: These services, programs, and projects will not be a reality, was it not for our dedicated SAVF employees and volunteers. SAVF has 1899 volunteers that form an integral part of our day-to-day activities while 2349 employees form the basis of our services.

Conclusion: The foundation of a social welfare organisation, such as SAVF, is the hope that we carry for those that have social needs. Tasleem Hassim, SAVF social worker at our Potchefstroom captured this hope:

“Life is indeed a series of moments that develop into memories. These memories are stitched within ourselves and reappear before us when we need it most – memories that last a lifetime.

Entering the world at 04h50 was a newborn with cries of love and the appearance of hope. Holding this miracle in my arms it brought a wide spectrum of emotions. A moment of love and everything in between. A moment where a mom produces a miracle. A moment which childless couples only dream of. This morning was filled with sadness and sorrow, happiness and joy, loss and motherhood.

It was a moment where I experienced emotions on opposite ends of a pendulum. I had to show my support to a mom who gave up her baby for adoption and I had to shadow my sadness to reveal happiness for the couple who accepted this baby as their own.

These were the moments of such sublime happiness and sorrow that I am of the opinion that true love is only seen through the eyes of a mother who gives up her child to live a life she can only dream of and to give a couple a miracle.

I know that where ever life takes me, these moments will always follow. They remind me what’s truly important. It’s not just life, but living. It’s the journey, the destination and all the points in between”.


SAVF Contact Details


Tel number: 012 325 3920

Physical address: 41 Hospitaal Road, Arcadia, Pretoria

Marketing Co-ordinator: Marietjie van der Spuy:

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