Empower our youth. Enrich our future.

         Thanda After-School is a project in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, that provides daily support to orphans and other vulnerable children. We use already-existing local resources -- from classrooms to soccer fields -- to engage 325 children, ages 5-22, in after-school activities. We employ young role models from within the community to be mentors for these students, filling the developmental and emotional gaps left by missing parents and overwhelmed caregivers.

         By working with these children in their local communities, Thanda keeps South Africa’s rural social fabric intact. Ubuntu, an overarching African idea that roughly translates to “humanity,” encompasses the Zulu custom whereby family members, friends, and neighbors take care of each other -- no matter what. At Thanda, we supplement this system by enabling children to grow up in their communities while providing necessary support and resources on a daily basis.

         By enrolling in year-long programs such as agriculture, construction, and computers, children in Thanda develop valuable skills and learn self-reliance. Students learn about teamwork and gain confidence by playing basketball, soccer, and netball, as their teachers promote healthy lifestyles and discuss HIV prevention. Thanda’s art and dancing programs encourage creativity and give the children much-needed outlets for healing. Every child in Thanda receives a meal after school, as well as homework help and engaging educational lessons that supplement their traditional schooling and nurture curiosity for knowledge.

Thanda After-School is a place where children stop seeing themselves as victims and start seeing their opportunities for the future.

Effective HIV prevention    Life skills development
Support for orphans and other vulnerable children

“I am the hope. I am the character of hope. Every day. We meet our kids at three o’clock. That’s the beautiful part of my day, you know. It feels more like it’s a new day.”
- Twin Doyisa
Thanda After-School teacher

Support Thanda After-School! “I’ve passed my half-yearly exams through Thanda lessons. I’ve learned good behavior through my teacher, who plays a huge role by making me see that I am special.”
- Thanda After-School student

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primary school

By focusing on self-worth and respect for others and the environment, children in Thanda are given the support and the tools they need to cope with their challenges, see the value of education, and grow up to be HIV-free leaders in their communities.

“Thanda is a wonderful project that provides hope to the learners and the community of this area.”
- Local school principal

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