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Self-help Centres

There are currently three self-help centres which are projects of QAWC. These self-help centres are managed by the residents who are responsible for all aspects of the running of these houses. Each resident in the house has duties and responsibilities and the residents work together to ensure the success and sustainability of the house.

The self-help centres employ staff who are trained to take care of the residents day-to-day needs. Each self help centre has a kitchen which provides for the dietary requirements of the residents. The self-help centres have wheelchair accessible vehicles which provide transport for the residents. These houses receive very little funding from the government and depend on various initiatives to raise funds.

Living in a self-help centre allows the residents to take control of and be responsible for their lives. It comes with a huge amount of responsibility and it is a lot of hard work to manage and sustain the self-help centres. The residents live in what is basically a communal home for wheelchair users and combine their various skills to ensure the smooth running of the self-help centre.

The three QAWC self-help centres

  • QUASAR Trust:

Situated in Parow, Quasar was the very first self-help centre in the Western Cape and was started in 1981 by a group of quadriplegics who were unhappy with the restrictions imposed on them at the institution where they were living. This determined group wanted to take control of their lives and destiny at a time when there were many more myths and misinformation about people living with disabilities than today. This group faced many obstacles and had to set about changing people’s perceptions and ideas of what wheelchair users are actually capable of.

Quasar is now home to 7 residents and continues to be an example of what can be achieved by people living with disabilities who have drive and determination. The residents organise regular golf days at various golf courses and hold market days at their house where the public can purchase fresh fruit and vegetables, freshly baked goodies and a whole lot more! Quasar has a facility which can be hired for meetings, conferences etc and organise dances at the local high school which are extremely popular with the regulars.

For more information visit www.quassar.co.za
You can contact the QUASAR Trust on: 021 939 7824

and e-mail: info@quassar.co.za

  • Andries Olivier Durbanville Quadriplegic Centre:
Andries Olivier House
In the early 1990s a quadriplegic called Andries Olivier had a dream of starting a self-help centre in the Durbanville area. An avid draughtsman, Andries successfully negotiated with the Durbanville council for a piece of land and drew plans for a self-help centre. At the same time an accessible house in Kuils River was rented as a temporary home to 5 quadriplegics.

Sadly Andries fell ill and passed away before the Durbanville house could be built, but the QAWC and his very good friends Danny and Alta Retief made it their goal to see their friend’s dream become reality. After many challenges the Andries Olivier Durbanville Quadriplegic Centre opened its doors on 1 August 2001.

The centre is home to 12 permanent residents and also has two guestrooms where wheelchair users can stay for a period of up to one month. Situated very close to the Durbanville town centre the residents, can regularly be spotted in the towns shops. Over the years the centre has received tremendous support from the Durbanville community and the residents of the centre have become a part of the Durbanville community.

In order to raise funds over the years, the Centre has held concerts featuring some of the biggest names in the South African music industry including Kurt Darren, Gerrie Pretorius, Nianell, Juanita du Plessis etc. The centre has a club 500 project which brings in a steady monthly income and also hosts an annual golf day as well as other fundraising projects throughout the year.

To find out more about the centre visit www.durbanvillequadcentre.com

You can contact the Andries Olivier Durbanville Quadriplegic Centre on: 021 975 5459

and e-mail: quads@telkomsa.net

The Masonic Home for Quadriplegics:
Mansonic House

The Masonic Home for Quadriplegics is the newest of our three self-help centres. In 2004 funding became available through Freemasonry South Africa to purchase a house to be used as a self-help centre. As fate would have it a house in Uitzight, which had been built to accommodate two quadriplegics came onto the market. The house was purchased and some renovations done so that the house could accommodate 6 residents. On 1 December 2004 six wheelchair users moved into the house and the Masonic Home for Quadriplegics was born.

Towards the end of 2009 alterations were done to the house to improve and increase the size of the staff quarters as well as to create an additional bedroom for a wheelchair user. The house which is in a lovely quiet crescent is now able to accommodate 7 wheelchair users on a permanent basis.

Fund raising initiatives include a club 500 project, an annual golf day, monthly market days on the last Saturday of each month on their premises and various smaller fund raising initiatives. The Masonic home receives support from the local churches, neighbours and several Masonic lodges.

You can contact the Masonic Home for Quadriplegics on: 021 979 1490

and e-mail: quadhome@qawc.org