. . .
  • 73 Van der Stel street, Oakdale, Bellville
  • 021 919 8533

WHO WE ARE

 

Down Syndrome Association Western Cape (DSAWC) is a non profit organisation. We provide support to people with Down syndrome and their families. Established in 1976 by parents, we are committed to developing the full potential of people with Down syndrome. We provide support to people with Down syndrome and their families. Our aim is to improve quality of life and to develop and refine skills so that people with Down syndrome can contribute to their communities.

We support our members through counseling, education, early intervention and sharing of information regarding medical aspects, employment and civil rights.

A little bit of history – DSAWC was started in 1976 by a group of parents of children with Down syndrome. This was before cell phones, the internet and social media. Gloria Botha, a mum of a little baby girl called Cheré, asked her local clinic sister to please let her know if any other mums with a baby with Down syndrome visits the clinic. A few days later another mum, Hillette Henn, visited the clinic with her baby girl, Amanda, and the sister gave her Gloria’s number.

Hillette rushed home and immediately phoned Gloria and an hour later they were sitting face to face. They came up with a strategy to contact other clinics as well as the Tygerberg Hospital genetic department and soon they were a group of 6 mothers, getting together and just helping each other by simply being there and creating a space where you and your child was not different from the rest, but the same.

The fathers where roped in too, and in 1976 the Association was registered under the name of the Western Cape Down Syndrome Association. The building that DSAWC still uses today was bought in 1978 and paid for by the first group of parents. Leaving a wonderful legacy to those who would follow in their footsteps

DSAWC was the first Association in South Africa – even the National Organisation was started by us. The first meeting of Down Syndrome South Africa was hosted by DSAWC in Cape Town.

 

OUR TEAM:


Board Members

  • Dion Govender  –  Chair person
  • Chris van der Westhuizen  –  Treasurer
  • Danie Hill  –  MC Member
  • Derek Lochner  –  MC Member
  • Vuyiswa Maliti  –  MC Member
  • Magdalene Ongansie  –  MC Member
  • Jan Malan  –  Co-opted member
  • Karin Morris  –  Co-opted member
  • Amelia Colyn  –  Secretary – co-opted
  • Tineke Ganz-Malan  –  Manager


Staff Members

  • Tineke Ganz-Malan  –  Manager
  • Esther Adams-Bruintjies  –  Outreach Co-ordinator
  • Amelia Colyn  –  Administrator
  • Heidré Visman  –  Social Worker
  • Marijke Vermaak  –  Fundraiser and Marketer
  • Reny Mohamed  –  Umthi co-ordinator
  • Le-ann Marsh  –  Umthi assistant
  • Ferial Charles  –  Umthi assistant
  • Maggie Storm  –  Umthi assistant
  • Sylvia Herselman  –  Umthi assistant


Volunteers

  • Beulah Matthee
  • Marianne du Plessis
  • Hillette Henn
  • Sasha Sanders
  • Joey Bruintjies
  • Corna van Rhyn Geldenhuys
  • Jaco Engelbrecht

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