• Context

Every year, South Africa has a significant number of AIDS-related deaths.
While progress in disseminating treatment and care for those affected has considerably reduced the number of deaths in recent years (according to UNAIDS, this number has dropped from 350 000 in 2009 to 180 000 in 2015 ), the number of AIDS orphans aged 0-17 continues to grow: UNAIDS estimates it to be 2,100,000 in 2015 compared to 1,400,000 in 2009.

Most of these orphans are hosted by relatives of deceased parents. Thus the “extended families” are multiplying, and in the most disadvantaged circles, these additional children are becoming economic “burdens”, especially for household run by single mothers, and they often don’t receive enough food.

  • Implementation of the Half Way House

The Roosboom Day Care Center was built by Designing Hope, on the outskirts of Ladysmith in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa. In this fully furnished 70 sq meter house, the objectives are to create a warm and secure environment for vulnerable children. A meal is offered to them before and after school hours as well as tutorship and entertainment in the afternoon.
The sponsorship of Designing Hope consists, after building the construction in 2011 with th support of Air France Foundation, to cover the yearly running expenses of the centre, including food supply, and coordinators and care-givers salaries

The Halfway House is welcoming 50 children aged between 5 and 14, mornings from 6:30 to 7:30 and afternoons from 15:30 to 17:00. The objective is to improve their life condition offering them nutritional support (while many of them go at school with an empty stomach), and school tutorship. Activities proposed in the afternoon intend to entertain them and encourage their creativity.

  • Impacts of this project

This project aims at improving education of these children, and offering them a secure environment and social care.
Tutorship will also improve their adherence to school programs.The nutritional supplement offered to the children improves their concentration at school.It contributes to the decrease of the juvenile delinquency in a neighborhood where such centre can bring more life and entertainment.

  • meal distribution

The project started with the supply of a snack for children and a hot meal on Friday, when children leave school early and spend the afternoon at the Half Way House. Since 2015, a hot meal is now distributed daily. Designing Hope organized a monthly delivery of non-perishable foodstuffs with a supermarket in the neighboring town of Ladysmith, supplemented by fresh produce grown in the garden garden set up on the grounds of the Half Way House.
3 women are in charge of the children, and prepare daily meals.
An international volunteer (US Peace Corp) is also in support of the project on site.

  • A pedagogical garden

Since 2013, and with the support of The Ivory Foundation, Designing Hope has set up an educational garden in the Roosboom center, which produces both fresh vegetables used all year for meals, but is also provide the extended families of the children with knowledge and support to start their own garden.

Indeed, the program “One House One Garden” finances the setting up of gardens in the most needy households.
This includes providing a fence to secure the garden and protecting it from animals in ramblings, providing garden tools and seeds to start the vegetable garden.

In addition to the three women who supervise the children, Designing Hope’s allowance for this project also pays the salary of 2 half-time gardeners who work both on the Half Way House garden and with the children, But also contribute to the set up of gardens of One House One Garden.

This project was implemented with the initial support of Air France Foundation in 2011.
It has been supported by The Ivory Foundation since 2013, and also benefited from the contribution of the A&A Ulmann Fund.


  • Discover below the last posts from Roosboom …

Distribution of meals during lockdown

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Roosbom’s “Half Way House” has adapted its functionning to the sanitary measures implemented in South Africa. A non-contact thermometer was purchased to check the children’s temperature before entering the center.  The children can still benefit from a complete and healthy … Read More

Maintenance of the garden with the children, Roosboom, South Africa

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A small change in the organization of the Half Way House in Roosboom, the women, who were previously employed part-time to prepare meals for the children, are now there full-time, and take care of the garden the rest of the … Read More

Life in Roosboom during the lockdown

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During the Covid 19 lockdown difficult times, the children were not able to go to the Half Way House. However, life is still active there! Masks were ordered to the sewing group for themselves and for the children of teh … Read More

Meals at Roosboom, South Africa

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Every day, 40 orphans from the township of Roosboom are welcomed at the Half Way House of Dessine l’Espoir, an activity center that welcomes children for 2 hours after school. Vegetables from the garden, eggs produced in the henhouse recently … Read More

School support at Roosboom, South Africa

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Every day, 40 orphans from the township of Roosboom are welcomed at the Half Way House of Dessine l’Espoir, an activity center that welcomes children for 2 hours after school. The coordinators are available, after the meal service, to accompany … Read More

The children visit the garden in Roosboom, South Africa

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Every day, 40 orphans from the township of Roosboom are welcomed at the Half Way House of Designing Hope, a centre where different activities are offered to the children for 2 hours after school. They receive a hot meal, and … Read More

Thebe Magugu’s visit in Roosboom

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The South African fashion designer Thebe Magugu, went to Roosboom to visit Desining Hope’s Half Way House in February 2020. He discovered the outdoor exhibition of his creations photographed by Aart Verrips on scarecrows, in the open fields.

The scarecrow of the Half Way house, Roosboom, South Africa

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On the occasion of the photography exhibition organized in Paris to the benefit of Designing Hope, featuring the creations of the South African stylist Thebe Magugu on scarecrows, we proposed to the children of Roosboom to be inspired by Thebe’s … Read More

Dance around the mandala, Roosboom, South Africa

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The Mandala becomes a place of creation for the children of the different countries involved in the educational garden projects. The children of the Half Way House of Roosboom, adopted their own, and prepared a choreography around the petals of … Read More

Biodiversity library in Roosboom, South Africa

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50 books about biodiversity, gardening, environment, nutrition, biodiversity, were purchased by Designing Hope to enrich the Half Way House library with the financial support of the A&A Ulmann fund. Books for all ages, to discover while having fun for the … Read More

Watering planks, Roosboom, South Africa

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Every day the children of Half Way House help gardeners water the garden.

Mandala of Roosboom, South Africa

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The children of Roosboom took part to cultivating new vegetables on the mandala of the garden.Spinach and salads plants have been planted, replacing tomatoes that have been harvested.

The children of Roosboom in South Africa are preparing a package for the children of Bercy school

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Like every afternoon, the children of Roosboom’s Half Way House come together for creative activities, sports, and garden maintenance before their meal is served. This afternoon, the children just receive a large envelopped with pictures and drawings made by the … Read More

The “suitcase” for the Half Way House in Roosboom, South Africa

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La Traversine and the Half Way House, two Transgardens educational gardens: one in France, the other in South Africa. The first is an urban garden, developed on the roof of a Parisian kindergarten with the aim of introducing youth to … Read More

The “suitcase” from Roosboom, South Africa

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The children of the center Siletithemba centre in Roosebom, received an envelope from the children of Bercy school in Paris. with a lot of curiosity and excitement, the young people opened the pack addressed to them and discovered letters and … Read More

Creating a memory game, Roosboom, South Africa

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This afternoon at Roosboom children have created a Memory game on the theme of garden vegetables. This activity allow children to develop their creativity while providing them source of entertainment, and improving their memory and their knowledge of vegetables.

Seed harvesting in Roosboom, South Africa

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The children harvested the seeds of chard ribs which they let grow seeds in the garden. These non-hybrid biological seeds can be reproduced.

Harvesting vegetables for the children meals, Roosboom, South Africa

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Children can enjoy every day a hot meal that uses some fresh vegetables they grow in the pilot garden.