Tammy Hanks and Priscilla Schlottman — both of whom completed doctoral degrees in Psychology/Social Transformation at Saybrook — serve as Director and Clinical Director of the Zulu Orphan Alliance (ZOA), a nonprofit organization founded by volunteer psychologists, therapists, social workers, and medical professionals. Current Saybrook student Donna Nassor sits on the board of ZOA, helping the organization provide a network of ongoing support to orphaned and vulnerable children living near Adams Mission, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa.
ZOA supports the Bhekanisizwe (which is Zulu for “look after the nation”) Center where where 26 orphans are housed and an additional 30 orphans and other vulnerable children receive meals and basic needs. What makes ZOA unique among aid groups is that, beyond the provision of basic needs like food, shelter, and medical care, we also offer free access to therapeutic modalities – particularly art therapy and expressive therapies that can be adapted in culturally senstive and appropriate ways that transcend ethnic barriers.
By buying fair trade coffee from Just Love Coffee, the Saybrook community can support the Zulu Orphan Alliance and Bhekanisizwe Center. They are raising funds both to support the ongoing care of the children and to enlarge the facility. Zulu Orphan Alliance is a 100% volunteer-driven 501(c)(3) U.S.-based nonprofit, led by highly motivated women who donate their time and energies to making a difference in the lives of Zulu children.
South Africa has one of the highest HIV/AIDS rates in the world. By 2015, one in three of South African Zulu children will be orphaned as a result of losing their parents and other caretakers to the disease. With limited government and social service intervention, many Zulu children orphaned by this epidemic do not have access to basic human needs such as food, shelter, education, and medical services. Unfortunately, many also fall victim to sexual predators and brutal child rape is commonplace. The goal is to not only restore these children’s physical health, but their emotional and psychological health as well.