In 1989, Rosalia Mashale, “Rosie” to those around her, a trained primary school teacher, moved from the Eastern Cape to Khayelitsha in the Western Cape Province. Khayelitsha lies approx. 25 km north of Cape Town and is one of the largest Townships around Cape Town in the vicinity of the airport. Rosie was disturbed to see young children going through the rubbish dump in search for food while their parents were away during the day, either at work or in search of work.


She responded by taking children into her home, and together with a group of women from the community, began looking after these unsupervised children. After the first week, 36 children had joined their charge.


The name given to this project was Baphumelele, a Xhosa word meaning “progress”. Since these humble beginnings the Baphumelele Educare Centre was founded, which today is an established community crèche (preschool) caring for roughly 230 children aged three months to six years.

While the Educare Centre had developed a reputation for tutoring children, Rosie also felt a calling to reach out to orphaned children in the community. To that end, the Baphumelele Children's Home was created as a place of safety for abandoned, abused, neglected or orphaned children, most of whom are either infected with or affected by HIV/Aids.Today the orphanage cares for approx. 160 children of all ages.


The children are brought to Rosie as tiny infants after their mothers have discarded them either in the bush, the nearby dams or more often in rubbish bins. Some of their stories are unbelievable. But it is not only the infants, there are children of all ages that are brought to Rosie for many very sad reasons. She takes them all and tries to find them a new home or makes them comfortable in the houses she has been able to build over the past few years. She is supported financially by many local and international sponsors as well as by the Governement of South Africa.


The daily running of the Orphanage is secured through approx. 15 volunteers and other helping hands. Most of the volunteers are from Germany.


The Capricorn Foundation has been asked to act as the German representative of "Baphumelele Children's Home". We will gladly assist Rosie and her Team with all issues related to German donations and donors.