What began as a small idea has slowly grown to a reputable organisation respected and appreciated by many we have crossed paths with. Let’s turn back some year pages and see where it all began.
While visiting the hospital with a group of ladies from church, the Director of RHP saw how some children who needed extra attention did not have access to palliative care services. So, the journey began of setting up an NGO called The Rocking Horse Project.
The first child we assisted will always hold a special place in our hearts. His name was Khumbulani, which means ‘to remember’. How fitting to have that as a reminder for the future children that we assist, to always remember the precious lives that we have had the privilege of touching. One may think the action is a one-way avenue of giving, but children have the wonderful gift to reciprocate that action and touch our lives deeply. One always has to be willing to learn. No degree of education can teach what our children have taught us – a smile through the pain, a hug that’s given to say I’m here, a story told with vulnerability or meeting and walking the journey with a teenager so ill, yet with such a will to live.
We can’t attribute the success we have had to only our own efforts. From the beginning we have worked closely and in line with the Eswatini Ministry of Health and the medical professionals around the country. Partnerships are very important – ‘Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work’. We work alongside and with our partners rather than working for them or even against them. “Collaboration is not domination of the weaker social partner by the stronger social partner, its partnership” (Magagula, C.M, Odumbe, J.O, & Marshall, S. 1997). Partnerships are vital.
One may think 7 years isn’t that long, but for a small organisation that started with minimal capital, it’s a blessing to be where we are, having assisted and continuing to help a growing number of children. We thank the many people and organisations that have come alongside and supported the RHP. The size of an organisation does not define its success or impact.
May we continue to live out our objective to be the hands that join the numerous facets of paediatric palliative care together and the feet that deliver our passion in a compassionate and dignified manner.