After an interview and selection process, Tami Moticoe was appointed as the manager in Soweto. We find that in such a vast space it is exceedingly difficult to spread out our resources. Thus a decision was made to have fewer sites with more counsellors and less travel. After securing premises in the Funda centre, which is situated opposite Baragwaneth hospital and near the taxi rank, we began setting up an office that is large enough for counselling, training, and meetings. The centre has security and is shared with Funda centre management and students, where the focus is on youth development particularly in the field of visual arts. There is a natural synergy with LifeLine on many levels.
On meeting with the counsellors in Soweto the consensus was the love for and importance of their work and how LifeLine and our counselling team represent a pillar of support to the community. Naturally counsellors prefer to counsel within their own community due to relationships already formed as well as practicalities such as transport.
Although the Funda centre is our administrative centre and office due to the space it affords, we are still keeping our space in Tsepho Themba private hospital and containers in Meadowlands police station. Referring to these spaces as satellite centres indicates that they are counselling spaces rather than offices. The number to call for counselling in Soweto is 067 019 0845. Clients will then be directed to the most appropriate centre. Please note that counselling is on an appointment basis. As we have been moved by the hospital as they expand their emergency room, counselling hours on the Tsepho Themba side have been reduced from 8:30am-2pm as we share space with other health professionals. A Google calendar has been set up to manage bookings and maintenance work such as painting is underway.