During my years working as a humanitarian, alongside friends who eventually became just like family, we got to meet and team up with a variety of other Organisations.
I’ll admit, as much as I enjoyed mixing ‘daga’ to lay cement foundations for houses with Habitat for Humanity, or teaching English as a second language, no other organization (or cause) touched and shook me quite like Baby Safe.
Why? Well, it’s a crisis that I was not even aware of in my own country, how could this be? It was not one of those shortages or ‘lack of’ something issues that are alive and well in every corner of the world, although somewhat connected, it was in my view a moral crisis: New born babies are being abandoned, discarded like unwanted trash and forsaken like nothing more than an old candy wrapper.
We had the privilege of meeting the pioneers of the Baby Safe clinics in South Africa, in a township near Cape Town. The compassionate people behind this project had devised a plan, a safe house, a hope for a people they do not even know. What started as a slow process of saving infant lives soon spread all over the country, as soon as the paperwork was done and it was granted it’s official status as an NGO. With more than 10 established Baby Safe havens, they have now crossed borders into Swaziland where they intend to continue their quest of being the voice for those who cannot yet speak.
So, how does the ‘haven’ work? It’s actually quite simple and smart, especially from a designer’s perspective. It’s a clinic equipped with what seems like a mail drop zone. This is to encourage the mothers, who would otherwise dump the baby, rather to ‘deposit’ it to the clinic. The baby then gently slides into the building to safety while notice goes to the staff on stand-by, who respond immediately and readily come in to take care and remedy the situation.
Whether it be food, medicine, a new family or just some pure, unbridled compassion, this whole process, organization and staff, in my opinion, encapsulate the raw notion of empathy and love. That baby now has a future it otherwise would not have: life, love and an opportunity to make his or her own mark in this world. The divine mortals that work at Baby Safe are literally saving lives and injecting a well needed dose of humanity in a world where this once basic instinct, has now become a rare commodity.
If you would like more information, or are interested in the technical side of things, you can visit their official website at thebabysafe.org. If you would like to get involved you can contact them via the same site. Helping hands are always welcomed.
Do your part in celebrating the real life super heroes, the stars that shine among us, they are the one’s who will secure the future of our world.
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