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14/38 HEARTBEAT HIV Orphans in South Africa

Aired September 23rd/14 on Inspiring South Africans with Heather de Wit and her guest Prof Sunette Pienaar


Prof Sunette Pienaar is a Social Entrepreneur, Compassionate Caregiver and the Founder and Executive Chairperson of Heartbeat, a nurturing NGO, which she started in 2000.

Heartbeat is set on empowering orphans and vulnerable children to reach their full potential, through quality service provision, development and capacity building, to be responsible leaders of the future by providing them all with educational material, health and social services.

The Mission of Heartbeat is that it dreams of all children in Africa being happy and having opportunities to fulfil their dreams. The ultimate goal is to develop sustainable communities with the capacity to care for and protect the rights of these youth and their families.

In 2004 it was estimated that 12 million children had already lost one or both parents due to HIV globally and that by 2010 that number would increase to 18 million children. According to a research paper in 2011 on the state of the South African Family, a total of 3.95 million children had lost one or both parents by 2008, an increase of about a third since 2002 and it is estimated that by 2015, some 5.7 million children would have lost one or both parents to AIDS. Since inception, Heartbeat has reached close to 50 000 orphans and vulnerable children  through direct and indirect interventions. These include child-headed households, granny-headed households and potential orphans living with terminally ill parents.



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