Our Child Wellbeing Programmes

Child monitoring standards within the World Vision South Africa programmes are aligned with child wellbeing outcomes and integrated with programming processes.

The programmes report on WVSA’s contribution to the wellbeing of children through regular monitoring and evaluation by World Vision Development Workers, who ensure that every registered (sponsored) child is visited at their homes at least every 90 days, and their wellbeing assessed against our target indicators of safety, health, literacy and general wellbeing.

Poverty is a complex problem, and World Vision seeks to address its root causes in a holistic way by focusing its efforts on three main areas: transformational development, humanitarian emergency affairs, and advocacy.Our focus on transformational development is to ultimately improve the wellbeing of vulnerable children in South Africa through community-based programmes with sustainable outcomes. We serve the country’s people regardless of religion, race, gender or ethnicity.

Transformational development is the process through which children, families and communities identify and overcome the obstacles that prevent them from living life in all its fullness.

World Vision partners with communities in providing access to knowledge and resources needed to combat poverty and to improve the wellbeing of children. We work with the community to facilitate a range of interventions, including programs in health, water and sanitation, education, economic development, microfinance and agriculture among others. World Vision also responds to disasters in affected communities.

We believe children should be cared for, protected, participate fully in community life and experience the love of God and their neighbours.

Child Protection

Child protection refers to all measures taken to strengthen the prevention of and response to exploitation, neglect, abuse and other forms of violence affecting children. Guided by Christ’s teaching, World Vision South Africa seeks to enable the fulfilment of children’s rights to protection from all forms of abuse and violence within families, schools, institutions and communities. Together with partners, we support:

  • prevention of exploitation, harmful traditional practices and violence against children in their families and communities
  • protection of children living in risky situations in communities
  • restoration of children who have been abused, neglected or exploited.

Child protection is promoted through World Vision South Africa’s advocacy activities to strengthen protective policies, law enforcement, safety nets, and social protection and to foster positive social change. Through World Vision South Africa’s Child Protection and Advocacy Model (CPA) our efforts include:

  • promoting effective national child protection systems with strong preventive and responsive mechanisms that protect children from abuse, neglect, exploitation and other forms of violence at community level
  • supporting children, in concert with their families and communities, to access protective services and to work towards the fulfilment of their rights to protection (This includes building awareness of child protection issues and child rights and the mobilization of communities for advocacy on child protection issues.)
  • nurturing effective collaboration and linkages between informal and formal actors in child protection systems so that the child protection system is recognized as relevant and legitimate by children, families and communities
  • advocating for adequate and feasible child protection system policies and plans (since in many cases current policies are not only under-resourced due to lack of political will but also unrealistic and not feasible, given fiscal priorities and existing capacities, and thus often become functionally irrelevant).

Through our own Child Protection policy and behavior protocols towards children, WVSA strives to create a child friendly organization as well as a child friendly community or society

Child Participation
A key element of World Vision South Africa’s child wellbeing aspirations is that children be cared for, protected and participating (CPP). Children can play a significant role as agents of transformation. We seek to build children’s ability to participate, taking into account their age, maturity and context. We uphold children’s rights to be listened to; to express their opinions on matters that affect them; to freedom of expression, thought, association and access to information, all while respecting the roles and responsibilities of parents and others in authority.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child states that children, as individuals and as a group, have the right to express their views freely in all matters affecting them. The Convention thus recognizes that children are agents of their own lives, with the capability to engage in decision-making processes, in accordance with their evolving capacities and gradually increasing autonomy. When children learn to communicate opinions, take responsibility and make decisions, they develop a sense of belonging, justice, responsibility and solidarity. These are important qualities for understanding and exercising democratic citizenship. We support child-led associations like Children’s Clubs, Children’s Parliaments and Children’s Committees that give children a public voice and contribute to development of leadership skills. Children’s participation must be relevant and voluntary, never tokenistic or manipulative. Child participation is both a right and a process, and that must include preparation, participation and follow-up; adults and children need time and must be prepared for meaningful, effective outcomes.

When engaging in child participation, World Vision South Africa follows five guiding principles that state our overarching goals and aspirations for the quality of child participation associated with our organization:

  • Child participation is a right and works to fulfil other child rights.
  • Child participation is ethical and safe.
  • Child participation is meaningful and sustainable.

Gender-based Violence

Gender-based violence and violence against women are often used interchangeably as most gender-based violence is inflicted by men on women and girls and reflects and reinforces inequalities between men and women. Going by The United Nations definition, violence against women is any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life. The World Vision South Africa actions and contribution towards addressing violence against women and the inequalities between men and women has been through awareness raising in partner communities using the Channels of Hope Approach and mainstreaming gender in development programmes.Channels of Hope (CoH) for Gender is an innovative approach to exploring gender identities, norms and values from a faith perspective. The program methodology challenges faith leaders to acknowledge and act upon gender injustices in their communities, as these are realities in many places where World Vision South Africa works. When faith leaders promote principles of equality, and the shared access and utilisation of family and community resources, this contributes to harmonious relationships within families, faith groups and communities.

  • Channels of Hope has five areas- HIV and AIDS, Child Protection, Youth, Maternal and Child Health and Gender.
  • Faith leaders are trained in the five (5) Channels of Hope models to equip them for their mission to promote transformed gender relations in homes, the Church and communities.
  • During the Women’s Month in August, community males are mobilised to lead events and discussions on ending violence.
  • During the 16 days of gender activism, events aimed at increasing and alerting communities to issues and realities of gender based are held in partner communities.
  • Gender is mainstreamed in World Vision South Africa’s development programmes to promote equitable distribution of benefits from development processes.

Food & Water Security/Agriculture

Food security resilience

The objectives of the in-community food security programmes include:

  • Promoting more productive and sustainable agricultural systems
  • Protecting and/or restoring healthy agro-ecosystems and adjacent landscapes through appropriate natural resource management
  • Supporting viable markets and smallholder agricultural enterprises
  • Building smallholder household resilience and capacity to manage risk in the face of shocks
  • Advocating at all levels for policies and legal/regulatory environments supportive of smallholder agricultural development
  • Promoting youth awareness and understanding that agriculture and its related activities are potentially profitable, honourable and exciting career and entrepreneurial options

Economic development

Our Food Security and Economic Development (FSED) framework addresses availability (agriculture productivity), access (markets, economic development, trade and safety nets), and use (improved nutrition through food resources) of agricultural products and initiatives.

The FSED framework is aimed at being an effective response against poverty and food insecurity by maximising the use and management of natural resources to create vibrant, equitable and sustainable rural communities. The FSED must improve the standards of living and welfare, but also rectify past injustices through rights-based interventions, addressing skewed patterns of distribution and ownership of wealth and assets. The strategic objective is therefore to facilitate integrated development and social cohesion through participatory approaches in partnership with all sectors of society.

The FSED vision is to create vibrant, equitable and sustainable rural communities. This includes contributing to the redistribution of 30% of the country’s agricultural land; improving food security of the rural poor; creating business opportunities, de-congesting and rehabilitating over-crowded former homeland areas; and expanding opportunities for women, youth, people with disabilities and older persons who stay in rural areas.

Spiritual Nurture of Children

Children’s Committees

Citizen’s Voice in Action

Children’s Rights

Youth Clubs

World Vision South Africa has in its programs sought to view young people as active participants in their own development and not just passive recipients.WVSA seeks to:

  • Allow young people to determine the intervention and the results
  • Facilitate the changes in their own environment as change agents
  • Influence positive thinking of the young person
  • Assist and support young people to challenge the odds

World Vision South Africa has started youth clubs in schools and communities for children to discuss issues of their health, education, economic development and citizen participation. Youth Clubs have been assisted to start their income generating projects.

Youth & Leadership Development Programmes

Child Health Now

As one of the country’s largest child-focused NGOs, World Vision South Africa is well positioned to leverage its experience since 1967, geographic reach in 6 of the 9 provinces and connection with local communities for between 5-20 years to help achieve MDGs 4 and 5 relating to maternal and child health, respectively, by 2015 and beyond!Child Health Now is World Vision’s first large-scale global advocacy campaign. The ultimate goal is for all families, particularly those in the poorest parts of the country, to have access to health care, treatment and education so that the children in their communities can remain healthy. Launched in October 2010, the five-year campaign calls on the government to deliver on their commitments to maternal and child health to facilitate the attainment of MDGs 4 and 5. If this not achieved, that the agenda continues post 2015

The campaign represents an opportunity for World Vision South Africa to harness its expertise in health programming and to maximise its impact through vocalising the need for systemic change at local, district, provincial and national, levels.

Specifically, the Child Health Now campaign aims to:

  • reduce child mortality by two-thirds by 2015
  • raise awareness of, and provoke greater public debate and discussion about, child mortality
  • inform and influence key decision-makers, including the government, business, faith communities, civil society and multilateral institutions, to enhance policies and implement health systems and services that effectively address maternal and child health.

In South Africa we would like to see an increase in women who exclusively breastfeed their children, all children immunized, clinic committees in place in all clinics and understanding their roles and responsibilities. We would like to see an increase in community health workers or community care givers who are adequately trained and supported helping women and children in their households. If this is supported by active political will and resources by government, World Vision South Africa believes that the issues of Child mortality will be reduced drastically in 2015 and or beyond. World Vision South Africa partners with a network of health and advocacy experts from across the country that support the development of policy analysis and coordinates materials to influence policy and empower communities on the issues of child and maternal health.

Sports programmes

Drop-in centres/Meals



Water & Sanitation (WASH)

Early Childhood Development (ECD)

School Infrastructure


Reading programmes

Bicycle Education Empowerment Programme (BEEP)

BEEPWorld Vision South Africa in partnership with Qhubeka and World Vision Switzerland will deliver 6000 bicycles to 8 World Vision Area Development Programmes (ADPs) around the country.
The main objective of the project is to improve children’s education through increased mobility

Project Partners:


BEEPQhubeka is World Bicycle Relief’s program in South Africa. Qhubeka’s mission is to uplift African communities by improving access to essential services through bicycles. Qhubeka aims to help rural communities in South Africa move forward and progress by providing quality bicycles through comprehensive programs to students, caregivers and entrepreneurs in return for service and work done to improve their community and their environment. A quality bicycle provides access to education, healthcare and economic prosperity. Qhubeka is an Nguni (Zulu, Xhosa) word that means “to carry on”, “to progress” or “to move forward”. Founded in 2005, Qhubeka has provided over 40,000 bicycles to date and is supported by leaders in the international bicycle industry, such as Trek, SRAM and World Bicycle Relief.

World Vision Switzerland

BEEPIn support of the programme, World Vision Switzerland has contributed 10% match funding towards the total BEEP project cost. Martin Suhr, Director for International Programs at World Vision Switzerland said “The project not only offers great opportunity to build relations between intercontinental World Vision offices but also creates opportunities to build relations between South Africa and Switzerland. “The possible impact of the project on children’s education in South Africa and its other related spinoffs such as increased community mobility and reduced travel times were the biggest incentive to invest in the project”.Apart from BEEP, World Vision Switzerland is also involved in 19 other African countries and focusses on 4 main groups of child wellbeing .

The four main focus areas

  1. Water & Sanitation
  2. Education & Income
  3. Child right & protection
  4. Health & Nutrition

For more information please visit www.worldvision.ch

The need for BEEP in South Africa

The decision to implement the project in South Africa was based research that indicate the need of school going children.

  • Of the 16 million children in school in South Africa, 12 million walk to school.
  • Of these, 500 000 walk more than two hours each way, spending four hours getting to school and back each day.
  • Over 50% of each day is spent in walking to meet basic survival needs and access economic and social opportunities in rural South Africa.
  • Only 40% of South African students achieve a qualification higher than grade 9.
  • 55% of children who enrol in grade 1 will never pass grade 12.
  • South Africa was placed 115th out of 144 countries with regard to access by children to primary schools.

The strategic objectives of BEEP:

  • Increase attendance of vulnerable children in community and government schools
  • Improve performance of vulnerable children in community and government schools
  • Improve livelihoods of bicycle beneficiaries and their families
  • Improve safety and security of students traveling to and from school

The High Level Process


  • BEEP introduction to schools and the community through World Vision Area Development programmes
  • BEEP induction and sensitisation meetings at the schools to inform parents and student about the project
  • Selection and induction of Bicycle Supervisory Committee
  • Selection of Beneficiaries and Mechanics based on application forms received and in line with selection criteria.
  • Signing of service to own contracts and capturing of baseline information with the selected beneficiaries and parents
  • Preparations for and bike handover ceremony
  • Continues Monitoring and Evaluation

Beneficiary Selection

Beneficiaries will be selected based on application forms received from parents and students who want to benefit from the project. Selection will done by the Bicycle Supervisory Committee established at each beneficiary school.

  • Selection of students:
    • World Vision Supported Children who completed application forms attending the school
    • Relative distance traveled to access school
    • Dropped attendance due to distances traveled
    • Orphans and Vulnerable Children (0VC) – students from household of limited resources with the current oversight of an existing OVC committee
    • School students’ ages typically range from 13 to 17.

BEEP: Program History and Overview

In 2009, Qhubeka’s partner, World Bicycle Relief (“WBR”) engaged with the Ministry of Education in Zambia to discuss the challenge of distance travelled by school-going children in the rural areas. The Ministry relayed that many students had to walk 10 – 15 km on a daily basis to reach their schools and that girl-children had the extra burden to complete many household chores prior to starting off to school. The challenge of distance resulted in increased tardiness, absenteeism, exhaustion and often the complete withdrawal of the child from the educational system.

Especially vulnerable are the girl students. Research shows that education is an essential element in the fight to end the cycle of disease and poverty in developing countries. While the scope of this problem is broad, one way identified to immediately increase school enrolment and the children’s wellbeing is safe, reliable and affordable transportation. WBR collaborated with the Ministry to further investigate the need through field assessments by interviewing many schools in remote locations over several months. From that experience and obtained feedback, the Bicycle Education Empowerment Program (“BEEP”) was developed with the goal to improve the educational outcomes for students living in the rural areas.

Homework assistance/Tutoring