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UJW Pretoria turns 80

  • CommunityPretoriaUJW
Being able to understand the impact of the good work the Pretoria branch of the Union of Jewish Women (UJW) was a real highlight of the organisation’s 80th AGM on Sunday. So to was honouring chairperson Sivea Stein on her 18th year in the hot seat.
by DIANE WOLFSON | May 10, 2018

The AGM’s two guest speakers Rudo Mabusa and Rochelle Reitz elaborate on the upliftment projects UJW members support in the greater community that were documented in a short video shown at the AGM.

Mabuso is the manager of the Mali Martin Polokegong Centre, which serves as a safe house for abused women and children. She spoke about the welfare organisation’s six shelters in Pretoria and the work each does with the police to try to change perpetrators’ behaviour. She also detailed how the centre empowered those in their care, offering them counselling as well as skills training, medical assistance, support and children’s programmes. “Human trafficking has become a major problem,” she warned.

Rochelle Reitz, a social worker at Magalies Special School in Pretoria, gave a heart-warming talk about the school and its focus on healing from childhood trauma. The school works with what she called “invisible disabilities, especially emotional, mental and psychological ones”.

Estelle Klein, from the national UJW, praised Stein for her efforts at ensuring sponsorship to keep upliftment projects such as these going. Klein also thanked the UJW Pretoria team for its dedication and passion in providing food parcels, clothing and stationery to needy schoolchildren and orphanages, as well as in arranging numerous other donations.

“We stand in awe of Pretoria’s achievements, which stand as a blueprint for volunteers everywhere,” said Klein, adding that this was the message she’d brought from UJW’s vice-president, Bev Goldman.

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