THALITHA CHILDREN'S TRUST

Every year, over 3500 South African Children are abandoned to hospitals by their Mothers

Dr Chelsea Zindoga had previously worked at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital. During her stay, she encountered and cared for babies abandoned to the hospital after birth. These mothers abandoned their babies, because they felt incapable of caring for and raising their newborns. They choose to abandon them to the care of hospitals, seeing them as better equipped for the needs of their babies.

In truth, hospitals do not have the specific resources for abandoned babies. They can only provide them with basic healthcare, while they await placement in various institutions or homes. A loving, stable environment is critical to a baby’s first few weeks. It is essential if they are to develop healthy relationships later in life. So important is this stage, that it will be the foundation of their entire social perception with the world.

We recognize the negative effects of abandonment. It is our mission to help every child find a home. To that end, Dr Zindoga, Dr Mary-Joe Stevens and Anastasia Posokhov created the Thalitha Children’s Trust. Operating as an NPO, the Trust devotes itself to providing care for abandoned infants.

Thalitha

‘Thalitha’, in several languages, means ‘little girl’, and is most commonly known for its use in the Biblical story in the Gospel of Mark, wherein Jesus is said to have raised Jairus’ daughter from the dead, saying “Talitha, cumi”, meaning “little girl, arise”. We hope to bring similar inspiration to the little souls who are to benefit from the work of the Trust, which concept is further encapsulated in our logo. Its variation, ‘Talitha’ is also the name of two major stars in the Ursa Major constellation. In this use, the name is of Arabic origin, meaning ‘three leaps of the gazelle’, with the three leaps referring to the three stars at the bottom of the constellation – representing our three devoted co-founders and trustees.

Our Mission

We devote ourselves to helping infants abandoned to hospitals grow up surrounded by love.

With the help of public and corporate donations we can build specialised units within hospitals.

Our units house abandoned children while they await relocation to permanent places of care.

What Donations Will be Spent on

Each donation we receive brings us closer to the goals we set for the trust. We need corporate sponsors in particular to create abandoned children units within hospitals.

Our first priority is equipping units. They need cots, linen, changing tables, and necessary medical and care-taking equipment.

Next, we will hire staff dedicated to the units. While we want to accept volunteers, abandoned children need full-time professional care.

Lastly, we need funds for food, diapers, clothing, and other necessities. Our children are precious to us. We want to make their stay as comfortable as possible.

How to Donate or Contribute

If you would like to become a corporate donor or supplier sponsor, please contact us at anastasia@thalitha.co.za. We seek impactful contributions which will sustain the operations of the units. Contact us and we can discuss how you can help the Trust.

If you represent a public or private hospital, we are eager to deploy one of our abandoned child units on your premises. Please contact us on chelsea@thalitha.co.za.

We are also open to any other corporate and private financial aid.

You can donate funds to the Trust in one of the following ways

Direct payment (EFT)

Bank: First National Bank
Account Name: Thalitha Children’s Trust
Account No: 62810120501
Branch Code: 250655

Swift

Code: FIRNZAJJ

* Please note that the Trust is applying to the South African Revenue Services as a public benefit organization. This allows the trust to issue tax-deductible Section 18A receipts to all donors. If you need a receipt, please email the Trust with you or your organization’s name, date and amount of donation.

 

Please include proof of payment, Tax number, and contact details as this will assist us in processing your request.Please use your personal or organization name as a reference. This will allow us to track all donations and issue tax-deductible Section 18A receipts.

Trustees

Dr Chelsea Zindoga
Chelsea graduated from Wits Medical School in December 2017 and started her internship at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in January 2018. Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital is the largest and busiest hospital on the continent and it has been a privilege for Chelsea to work at this institution as she has gained invaluable experience. With privilege comes responsibility, and Chelsea has always advocated for the best possible care for her patients, which is challenging in a resource limited setting. But there are no great people in this world, there are only great challenges that ordinary people rise to meet.

Chelsea has always wanted to be a doctor, and her parents often tell stories of her playing the doctor with her teddy bears as a young child. Becoming a doctor at the age of 24 was a dream come true for her, and is a testament of Chelsea’s tenacity and dedication to making her dreams come to fruition.

When Chelsea was still in high school, she cofounded the Arundel Volunteer Club at her high-school in Harare, where she grew up. The club went on to achieve great heights and refurbished local schools and provided sanitary wear to young girls to keep them in school. When she was a medical student, she was the Vice President of Wits Friends of Doctors Without Borders and raised funds for the worthy cause.

As a budding paediatrician with a passion for children, Chelsea would like to make a lasting impact for children that have been abandoned and given the poorest possible start in life.

As the founder and initial trustee, Chelsea’s passion will continue to drive the Trust to carry out its mission and change the lives of these precious children. Chelsea’s life motto is a quote by Nelson Mandela, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children”, and Chelsea has made it one of her life’s goals to change the lives of children in South Africa and beyond.

Dr Mary-Joe Stevens

Mary-Joe graduated from Wits Medical School in December 2016. She completed her internship at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in December 2018. She is now doing her community service in pediatrics, her lifelong passion, at Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital.

During her internship, Mary-Joe encountered many abandoned babies, and always longed to create a place where these little beings would be properly tended to, where they would receive the love they deserve, and find a safe haven. Mary-Joe would often personally care for these children, holding and feeding them during her shifts at the hospital, and personally donating clothes and blankets where they had none.

Mary-Joe is a cancer survivor and was blessed by God with a second chance at life, when it was nearly taken from her at a very tender age of 23. This second chance has fueled an appreciation and passion for life. Her illness enabled her to become a better doctor, a doctor that can understand physical and emotional pain beyond what is expected of them, enabling her to connect with her patients on a level that few other medical professionals can. Her illness did not and will never define her. She is a survivor, and being a survivor was not the end of her story but only the beginning of a beautiful one.
Mary-Joe is kind, determined and diligent. She is a lion-hearted woman who leaves everyone in her path feeling just a little bit more loved in her wake. She is the heart of the Thalitha Children’s Trust. Always acting in the best interests of those children she encounters, Mary-Joe ensures that the Trust always stays true to its path, and firmly on course to provide safe havens for abandoned children.

Anastasia Posokhov

Anastasia is a lawyer by profession. She has spent most of her career giving legal, compliance and risk advice to corporates, having worked at one of Africa’s largest law firms, Webber Wentzel, and global firm Hogan Lovells. Anastasia has also had significant exposure to the African continent, predominantly in her support of Small and Medium Enterprises during her six years working on a United Nations Development Programme regional project through a multi-national organization. Anastasia’s heart is in the shape of Africa – she is passionate about developing, uplifting and inspiring people around the continent who will enable this land to realise its fullest potential.

As one of the initial trustees, Anastasia assisted in the conceptualization of the Trust, its mission, and how its purpose would be implemented. She worked on the formalities of establishing and registering the Trust, and now supports the administrative and legal structure of the Trust, while also assisting with both augmenting strategic concepts, as well as designing and enabling the formal framework for the implementation thereof.

Anastasia brings structure and formality to the vision and mission of the Trust, but her compliance checking and administration of the Trust is always balanced by her own experiences as a mother of two small children, which enables her to contribute to the practical strategy of the manner in which the Trust is to optimally benefit minor children. Anastasia believes that by investing in the building of a strong foundation of the youngest citizens of Africa, and not letting them fall through the cracks of society, we will ensure that Africa will in future pass to the loving hands of those whom have been nurtured and formed by acts of kindness, and in turn, take care of our precious continent.

A message from us

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We cannot express how grateful we are for every cent contributed to the Trust. Every person can make an impact, no matter how small. The Trust exists because groups large and small want to see us change society for the better. The lost children of South Africa have a voice. They deserve a part in our country.

Corporate sponsors

Get in touch

If you would like to contact us, either to get to know more about the Trust and what we do, find out how you can volunteer at one of our abandoned child units, or to discuss how you could contribute to the Trust in other ways, please complete the following form, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.