Founding Volunteer Executive Director of Mabopane Foundation, Becky Young, visited Mabopane on her first mission trip in 1998. There, she found two partnering shelters striving to serve poor and disadvantaged children and provide for their basic needs with little resources. Becky's heart was touched by the many volunteers who gave genuine love and care to the children. But more than that, Becky was touched by the children themselves because in the midst of such despair, they had joy in their lives and approached every day with a smile. Becky knew that these children had been told they were loved and that there was hope. She knew ongoing monthly resources were necessary to provide some sense of security for daily living and the possibility of a better life ahead. She saw the potential of each child and began to pray about how she could invest in their lives.
For over 20 years now, Becky's passion and vision for providing food, shelter, clothing, and education for orphaned and vulnerable children has been caught by hundreds of people. The Mabopane Foundation has provided financial assistance to help hundreds of children over the years. Assisting with housing, electricity, water, gas, school fees, uniforms, medicine, food, continuing education, and job skill training.
With the help and support of many, Becky launched the Mabopane Foundation in 2003. Through the years God had shown the Mabopane Foundation and other ministry partners the need for permanent, safe housing. After a great deal of prayer and research, the Foundation transitioned from financially supporting shelters to launching the "Building Together" campaign in 2011 to build Ya Bana Village. The first house was constructed and furnished that same year. The current expense for a new house is approximately $35,000.
Ya Bana Village has flourished into a gated community withseven houses. Each house is managed by a carefully selected and properly trained single “house mom” who supports 6-8 children. This environment gives the children a true sense of security and authentic family life. The Village also includes the Early Learning Center, Youth Living Center, and Rondavel guest house.
Beginning as a two classroom facility in 2012 for the Ya Bana children, the Early Learning Center now consists of six classrooms, storerooms, bathrooms, a kitchen, and playgrounds for pre-school children. The school is attended by over 150 children from Ya Bana and the surrounding community.
The Children’s Act in South Africa stipulates that a child must leave a Child and Youth Care Center upon reaching 18 years of age. Ya Bana constructed and furnished a Youth Living Center in 2013-2014 as a dormitory style building to accommodate the children who have turned 18. The youth are provided an opportunity to complete his/her education, while learning independent living skills, and receiving training to obtain full time employment.
The monthly operational expenses for Ya Bana Village include staff and teacher salaries, a social worker, medical services, food, clothing, security, transport, excursions, school fees, etc. This remains a God size endeavor.
Becky's passion is contagious and she welcomes an invitation to speak with your friends, family, church, or civic organization. Your heart will be challenged to make an investment of time, talent, or treasure when you hear first-hand the amazing "God Stories".