When Chipo's parents died, she went to live with a distant uncle and aunt, who not only treated her like a slave, but also severely beat and abused her. When she was admitted into a mission hospital with broken limbs, Social Welfare contacted Shalom. Chipo now lives in the home where she is loved and cared for and spends her time laughing and playing with her new brothers and sisters.
A haven of peace and tranquillity our residential children’s home is set in a quiet suburb in Northern Harare. The home is split into four family units staffed by various members of Greystone Park Church, and is registered with the Department of Social Services in Zimbabwe.
With beautiful grounds, playground equipment and swimming pool, it is hard to imagine these children being abandoned, neglected and sometimes abused, but for many this was their story before they arrived. It is our prayer that now they will have a start in life that does not leave them marginalised and under-priviledged, but ready and equipped to face the world and make a difference through the power of Jesus. We currently have 17 children at Shalom who have been placed with us through the Department of Social Services.
The pre-school aged children in the home travel each day to Greystone Park Church, to attend the Shalom Pre-School which is run in the church building by The Michael Project. This pre-school not only caters for the children from our residential home, but also for 25 under-priviledged children from the local Greystone Park area, and gives the Shalom children a chance to interact and play with other children of their age.
We also run Shalom Learning Centre for the older children in the home, as well as for children from Runyararo Children's Home, which is in the same suburb. Following the ACE programme, and under the close supervision of our dedicated teachers, the 12 children currently in the learning centre are thriving in an environment where they can work at their own pace, enabling them to catch up on many years of missed education due to illness, abandonment and poverty.
On 21 November 2010, seven cyclists competed in the Momentum 94.7 Cycle Challenge in Johannesburg, South Africa, to raise funds to establish a chicken producing project at Shalom. This project involves building chicken houses and equipping them, in order for us to grow chickens, not only for Shalom, but also other orphaned and vulnerable children.
Chris Coles, from Southborough Lane Baptist Church in the UK, spent three weeks with us in November 2010 to over see the start of construction on the chicken houses. A day after arriving, Chris was thrown in the deep end and running around Harare in our bakkie (pick-up truck) sourcing cement, gum poles & roof sheets .. all a bit of a culture shock! By the time Chris left 3 weeks later two of the houses were nearing completion.