You’ve probably all seen little children walking around in adult’s shoes, aspiring to fill them. Bigshoes is about medical interventions that assist orphaned and vulnerable children (especially those affected by HIV/AIDS) to grow up to fill big shoes! Bigshoes makes interventions at key “points of vulnerability” in the life space of the child; these include abandonment, orphaning institutionalization, terminal illness and disease. Interventions are made through medical services, training and advocacy.
Essentially Bigshoes has four components to its project:
Abandoned Baby Project provides training for policemen and social workers on the emergency medical care of the abandoned new-born. Here we also provide “abandoned baby packs” consisting of gloves, umbilical cord clamps, sterile blades, milk powder, baby clothes, bottles and a blanket to care for the abandoned babies.
Pediatric Palliative Care provides palliative care to children with life-limiting conditions. This is done at hospices, children’s homes and within the community. Holistic interventions are administered which address pain and other distressing symptoms which affect quality of life.
Medical Clinics and Outreach provides free specialist pediatric services to orphaned and vulnerable children which includes HIV testing; age assessment; medical reports for adoption and anti-retroviral treatment. Children are seen in our clinic in Braamfontein and in the paediatric out-patient department at the Chris Hani Baragwanath hospital in Soweto. Bigshoes doctors also do “house calls” for children’s homes and assist in medical outreach services to the community.
Training component offers training courses for lay child and youth care providers working both in children’s homes and the community. The 5 day course covers aspects of basic child health, childhood illnesses, growth and development. Emphasis is placed on meeting the health care needs of children and on anti-retroviral treatment for children.
HOW CAN YOU HELP BIGSHOES TO HELP ORPHANED AND VULNERABLE CHILDREN GROW UP TO FILL BIG SHOES?
By giving of your time…
• Volunteer to help in their clinics (holding babies, making tea, help with filing)
• Volunteer to help with their training (setting up and cleaning up afterwards, registration, copying and assembling training manuals , helping to serve meals and teas)
• Volunteer to help in hospice (playing with children, doing school work, running errands: fetching medicines)
• Assist them with your expertise in:
• Marketing and advertising
• Printing business cards and brochures
• Strategic and financial planning
• Monitoring and evaluation
• Office renovations and maintenance (calling all handymen!)
• Driving and running errands
By giving of your money…
• Help them to get a second branch in Durban going
• Sponsor a pediatrician’s session (R170/hour)
• Sponsor a trainer’s session (R150/hour)
• Help pay a bill (rent, electricity, telephone, security, petrol, equipment rentals, stationary)
• Contribute to their car fund
• Big Shoes Banking details are:
Account Name: Wits Health Consortium T/A Bigshoes
A/c No: 62077797432
By donating goods…
• A digital camera
• A fax/phone/copier combination for their satellite office at Baragwanath hospital
• Office furniture for Baragwanath and Durban; desks, chairs, filing cabinets, photostat machines, telephones etc
• A kombi for their paediatric palliative day care service
• Cellphones and airtime for their outreach teams
Visit the links alongside for more information.