Funda Nenja is an NGO in Mpophomeni (outside Howick, KZN) that brings together 70 disadvantaged children and their dogs for training, every Friday after school.
This remarkable project consists entirely of volunteers and has been in existence since 2009. As Yvonne Spain, one of the volunteers explains: “It is heart-warming to see so many children having fun while bonding with their pets, learning about responsible pet ownership, dog training skills, leadership and team building.”
The dogs receive love, medical attention, vaccinations and sterilisations thanks to the local SPCA. The project has a visible positive impact on both the children and the dogs – which is evident at the numerous demonstrations given by Team Funda Nenja at events in and around KZN.
What makes this project unique is that by working with children and their dogs, it is possible to encourage the values of compassion and respect that go beyond the training ground and demo ring, into their families and communities. By teaching children how to love and care for their animals, the cycle of animal abuse is slowly being changed.
Yvonne clearly has a passion for the work that the does with the charity, “To see these children, who are from disadvantaged backgrounds, every Friday having fun and learning about the rewarding aspects of caring for an animal is what keeps me coming back.”
Funda Nenja will soon be introducing the services of an Auxiliary Social Worker to assist with caring for the needs of children facing difficulties at home.
The organisation needs funding and donations for the programme, including: dog collars, leads, food, treats, bowls and medications. They also need pop-up gazebos, tog bags for the demo team, a sponsor for branded Funda Nenja t-shirts so that they can give one to all participating children.
For more on Funda Nenja, take a look at this clip:
This is Yvonne’s story of help. To find out how you can help:
|(t) 083 467 7124