Providing opportunities for the Homeless

About Us

The NET is an holistic approach to managing street people. The underlying philosophy is “hand ups, not hand outs”. The NET works with homeless people to provide opportunities for them to transition off the street.  We seek to empower individuals to take responsibility for their future through accountability and responsibility.

We acknowledge that not all individuals are able or want to leave the street, however, they should still be treated with dignity and given an opportunity to work for their needs rather than begging or given handouts.

The Name

The NET is representative of both the NET we cast out for people who have lost their way as well as the NETWORK we have established to work together as a community for common good.

Fish Hoek has a fishing background with a unique culture and diverse needs.  Our approach is designed to meet the specific needs of Fish Hoek.

As a NET spans great areas and is knotted together, it is vital for this initiative to succeed, to have the support of Community working together to give responsibly rather than giving hand-outs on the street.

Rehabilitation

The NET propose addressing homelessness holistically, in order to reduce the number of people in the street and some of the negative connotations commonly associated with Street People. 

We cannot force an addict to give up drugs and alcohol and likewise we cannot force homeless of the street, they need to want to make the change.  This is unfortunately very scary for some of them as it represents change from what they are used to, no matter how bad the current status quo is.

We try to introduce normalcy such as eating a meal together at tables, providing crafts, access to nurses, trauma and drug counsellors and in some instances work opportunities.  We desperately need the community to assist with giving opportunities for Community Service or work.  This improves the self esteem of the individuals and removes the dependence on begging.

It is hoped that these interventions, and seeing others who were previously on the street, now changing their life will be attractive enough to convince others to make the change.

The Fish Hoek Homeless Conundrum

There is a growing number of homeless in Fish Hoek and much debate about why this is. To a large extent, the residents enable homelessness and begging by acquiesing to requests for food, clothing, blankets and money whether through direct or indirect begging.  Those living on the street know that they have an excellent chance of getting clothing, money, and food simply by asking for it. This encourages a sense of entitlement, often manifesting in aggressive and demanding behavior (supplemented by drug abuse), and discourages them from leaving the area or rejoining society as productive residents.

Soup kitchens and feeding schemes also receive a portion of criticism and whilst The NET does not in itself distribute food in this manner, our belief is affirmed through the efforts of other NPOs and volunteers that the Homeless and Street people will not go hungry in Fish Hoek and that a large portion of money given by residents is spent on drug and alcohol abuse.

Where We Are Situated

The Net
7 Kommetjie Road
Fish Hoek 7975
Cell : 078 198 5663
info@thenet.org.za

    Our Network Partners

    We share information through a forum of organisations operating in the street people space to ensure a holistic and integrated approach to the homeless in the area.

    Living Hope

    Living Hope adopt a holistic approach where they seek to address people wherever they are through four ministries, of compassionate health care, recovery and restoration, guidance to right living and economic improvement.

    A mobile Nurse from Living Hope connects with Street People at the Net to conduct health screening tests.

    Street People engaging with The Net are exposed to opportunity to engage through the Living Hope Recovery and Restoration Programme.

    Individuals at the Net receive guidance from trained psychologists and counsellors and opportunity exists to attend the Living Hope Job Centre and there are opportunities for employment

    Espavo: Zaeemah Robinson

    The objective of Espavo Projects is to enable homeless and destitute individuals in Fish Hoek and South Peninsula areas to become self-sustainable through skills development and training opportunities and where possible, to generate an income through their skills.

    Happy Valley and The Haven

    The objective of Espavo Projects is to enable homeless and destitute individuals in Fish Hoek and South Peninsula areas to become self-sustainable through skills development and training opportunities and where possible, to generate an income through their skills.

    The HeArt Project

    The HeArt project is a start up not for profit organization operating in the Southern Peninsula of Cape Town whose mission is to touch the lives of those in need through meditation, art and connection.  Individuals attending HeArt Project workshops join together for a meal at the Net.  The relationship becomes a two-way referral.

    Revamp The Valley

    Revamp The Valley is a registered Non-Profit Organisation based in Fish Hoek involved in Community Improvement.

    U-Turn

    U-Turn operate a Service Centre in Muizenberg and in Claremont.  Street People expressing a desire to engage in the Life Change programme through U-Turn are accordingly referred.

    Keys to Operations

    Network

    The Net does not seek to replace existing interventions.  We NETWORK with different organisations, private individuals and Government working with Street People.  This avoids replication of interventions and prevents manipulation of services.

    We share information with our closest counterparts in Simonstown, Kalk Bay, and Muizenberg, through respective Ward Councillors, Social Workers and NGO’s (Happy Valley, The Haven, U-Turn, Living Hope and Hosa).

    The Fish Hoek Valley Residents and Ratepayers Association and the Fish Hoek Business Improvement District have stated their support for The Net initiative.

     

    Work for Credit

    Clients at The NET are able to earn an income in the form of a stipend by fulfilling key roles in the organisation or working on projects which qualify for a stipend. 

    Volunteers Connecting

    We rely largely on the generosity of volunteers in giving their time to work with The Net.  This keeps overheads down and ensures that money donated goes to meeting the needs of Street People.

    The Volunteers prepare and eat food and clean up with the Street People and many facilitate morning devotional, life skills and skills transfer group discussions.

    It is through sitting with a street person and engaging with them on a one-to-one basis, sharing encounters and acknowledging the person as an individual that we can begin to restore esteem needed to make life changing decisions.  Conversations and engagement are both key to reintegration.

    If you are interested in volunteering, we would welcome and appreciate your assistance.

    Appealing to the Community

    Have you ever felt conflicted between the guilt that you have food and a bed to sleep in or the desire to assist those less fortunate than you and knowing that by giving money or even food all too often keeps the person street-bound.

    The Net encourages members of the community to make donations through The NET, NGO’s or structured organisations to meet the needs of street people. 

    The Net sends out regular information about where the community can refer street people when they are confronted by someone requesting assistance.

    As one central coordinating body in Fish Hoek, The NET are better able to direct both assistance offered and support needed.

    We acknowledge homelessness is multi-faceted, we cannot solve homelessness or poverty – it is an age-old phenomenon.  We can however provide opportunity for people who want to, to get the support they need and inevitably help themselves. We aim to work together, in this arena, to the benefit of the community as a whole.

    Contact Us

    info@thenet.org.za

    078 198 5663