Volunteers, under the guiding eye of Mrs. Patience Mavata, essentially run the Home of Life Hospice. Sick people in the community are visited and taken care of, or if necessary, arrangements for hospitalization are made. The Home Base Care workers wash them, feed them, clean their homes and make sure that they take their medication regularly. These women volunteers sometimes have to travel as far as five kilometers between homes.
Due to their rural traditions, none of these Home Base Care workers earn a salary for what they are doing. Their dedication and motivation comes from their heart.
In the community, there are a lot of families who struggle for food, and suffer for the lack of it. These volunteer Home Base Care workers also distribute food. Generally, the widows and orphans get fed first.
In order to provide enough funds for the above-mentioned programs, and with a seed grant from Family Care Foundation, hospice overseer Patience Mavata and her volunteers have undertaken to create beautiful handmade Zulu beaded crafts to market.
From the sales of these necklaces, bracelets and other handcrafts, the women gained dignity, as they were able to start earning an income. We have since helped them branch out so they also benefit from income from seamstress and tailoring business. The profit is reinvested in their micro enterprise, allowing them to grow into a thriving income-generating operation. Sales help the needy in the community, while also covering the running expenses of the Hospice.
Family Care Foundation provided the initial Seed Capital for this micro enterprise in June 2003, in the value of $2,000. The average monthly revenue derived from this program has been $3,358. With careful budgeting, this income has also made it possible to purchase a 4x4 vehicle for the Hospice, in addition to the regular medicine, equipment, food and other supplies. The vehicle is large enough to carry the patients between the Hospice and other hospitals and it is also used as a pick-up truck when large amounts of food need to be transported.