An American dream

Rebecca Kemp, an American and former teacher determined to provide abandoned children in South Africa with a loving and safe home has faced many challenges but has no plans to give up.

30 January 2014 | Lesego Puso -

Kemp emigrated to South Africa in 2009 and has in the past two years relentlessly been trying to establish a childrens home for abandoned children.

"My journey has been a two-year process and by the look of things it may take me much longer to achieve my goal," she said.

When she arrived in South Africa, Kemp said she was touched by the plight of homeless children living on the streets longing for a place to call home.

Believing that this was an issue that needed to be addressed, Kemp saw the need to build a childrens home.

"I believed that acquiring funds to run a childrens home wouldn't be too hard seeing that getting children off the streets was an issue that affected everyone," said Kemp. However, she explained that just getting the organisation registered was a long complicated process and trying to raise funds hadn't been easy either.

She has organised a gala evening for the 18 March at La Vie En Rose in an effort to raise money to buy a house which she can turn into a shelter.

"I have had some response from people back in the states, but what I have realised is that many people are only willing to help once you have the children," she said.

"My biggest challenge right now is to convince people to believe in this dream because I cannot help children if there are no finances."

I dont want to be in a position that many organisations land up where they have to close their doors soon after opening because they cannot financially maintain running their shelters.

Kemp said helping children was a passion of hers and was determined to make it work.

She invited those willing to get involved in this initiative to attend the gala which she hoped could raise at least R25 000.

Details: 0716717923 or email