The Team With a Heart

There is a small staff consisting of an Executive Director, a Centre Manager, a House Mother, 3 kitchen and cleaning staff, an administrator, four full-time coaches and six part-time coaches. The children are referred to the centre by teachers at the five schools our children attend. Perhaps a child is looking unkempt, has not eaten for days or is depressed. These signals alert the teacher to a problem at home, and, once investigated, the teacher sends the child to us. Our maximum intake is 100, but sometimes it is impossible to refuse a small child whose eyes implore us.

Most children live with a guardian, an aunt or a grandmother. A few of our children do have one parent alive but in most cases, that parent is either ill or unemployed. Many of our children’s care-givers receive a government grant but that grant does not always reach the child. This is why we have introduced the Ingelosi ( angel) network whereby an adult can adopt a child. $400 a year or R3600 is distributed to each child over a 12-month period and that money goes directly towards meeting a child’s need, be it a pair of shoes, food, a jersey, a visit to an optician or whatever else.

Our Team

Mlungisi Mvelase started acting at the age of ten and since from then he never looked back he continued with his dream of becoming an actor. He started performing professionally at the age of sixteen at the Market Theater and went around performing in other theatres around the country.

My objectives: to create and develop a platform for young people through arts and culture. I am a drama couch but through the gift of God I can choreograph Dance and I even teach Drumming.

Any qualifications: Basic counseling skills, The Power of Self Esteem, HIV/Aids and the Child Care.

Future plans : I'd like to have my own theatre company and Direct films/drama and keep helping the children at Rena to develop.

How I came to Rena: A colleague who was volunteering at Baragwaneth, I heard about Rena and told the organization that there is a centre based in Zone 6 Soweto and they need people who can teach children art and that is how I joined Rena.

Why I came to Rena : As a young person who always believed in youth development, I told myself that this is an opportunity that I can’t miss and my dream of building the nation will be fulfilled.
- Mlungisi Mvelase
I came to Rena brought by a Security guard who was working at the Social Development her name was Priscilla. I came to Rena because I want to help at Rena coz my grandson is one the children who was chosen to come to the centre.

At Rena I do cooking and cleaning and do washing of clothes if there is any. I always make sure that the food is ready for the kids coz I'm here to try to meet their needs coz they don’t get tender care at their homes.

I only have standard two only. My future plan is I wish I could go to a Cooking school where I can learn to cook more than I can now.
- Suzan Mfaswe
Came to Rena referred by Miss Eunice Mukhari who was a teacher at one of the schools who access the kids for the centre. Her sister's son was referred to the centre coz he was not well as his parents passed away. She is doing cooking and cleaning washing if there is any.
- Julia Maumakoe
One of our staff members from Township Arts Project told us about Rena le Lona. From there on i saw the need to help them with the Skills that i have. At first i was teaching drama with the kids of Rena, and i saw the need to do music with them as i did music while i was still at school. I also take the children for storytelling and help them with their school work, i’m involved in the Saturday morning education classes.

My main objective is to see our kids making progress in their life, not only in arts but also in their school work, because i believe school and talent go hand in hand. I have Matric certificate and i'm also working on my studies as i have registered with UNISA for a degree in Social work.
- Mduduzi Khuzwayo
who is the Centre Manager, introduced me to Rena. The passion and the love for children brought me to Rena, being at Rena means the world to me. I am currently doing administration at Rena Le Lona, which is my most enjoyable job ever, Working in an environment where there are kids around is so fantastic.

I have a Matric certificate and a diploma in Call Centre. My plan is to help Rena to grow with every skill that I’ve got, to share my love with every individual at Rena and to keep that smile on the faces of our wonderful children.
- Ayanda Kubheka
Im 35yrs of age. I am a full time professional tennis coach, been coaching for past 13 yrs now. Currently self employed as Mike's Tennis Coaching. Previously worked with (ITA). Melpark tennis club, St Johns College and St Katherine. Michelle used to be our client at ITA. Now Im Head Tennis Coach at Charter House and Charter College in Clear Water area. I knew of the Rena Le Lona Centre through Michelle Freedman, she invited me to come work with the centre kids, because i love working with the youth i jumped to the opportunity.

I have been with the centre for 2 yrs and loving every week l spend with them on and off the courts, i would like them to improve their tennis playing abilities and hopefully one day we call produce a provincial player. This is one of my future goals to produce as many Pronvicial to national Junior to future Pro players. I qualified as an RSA pro in 1998.
- Michael Mathews Ngoma (Coach Mike)
Started on the 12 of April 2010 as an assistant cook and cleaner but she is willing do more things for the centre. For the future she would like to learn about cooking.
- Agnes' Khanye