Hope for tomorrow

Our place of safety

Get Involved

Hope for tomorrow

Our place of safety

Get Involved

Hope for tomorrow

Our place of safety

Get Involved

Hope for tomorrow

Our place of safety

Get Involved

Hope for tomorrow

Our place of safety

Get Involved


The Holy Cross Child and Youth Care Centre was established in 1918.

We have been caring for neglected, vulnerable children and those abandoned and orphaned for over 100 years.

We are a registered child and youth care centre equipped to care for 110 children aged 2-16, all whom have been placed at our facility through a statutory court process. Even though the service model has changed somewhat through the years, our core mission is to provide care for children in need of protection.

Our Objectives are:


To provide

To provide a comprehensive residential care programme for the care, protection & development of children & youth placed in terms of the Children‚™s Act 38 of 2005.


To facilitate

To facilitate the reunification and reintegration of children and youth with their family and/or the community.


to assist

To assist children and youth in their transition from institutional care to integration with family OR to independent living.

Our Story

Old photoOld photoOld photo

In 1904, the Roman Catholic Mission in Parow was founded by the Right Reverend Bishop Rooney. In time a tin building was constructed on the Mission ground, which served as a church as well as a school. The Mission was entrusted to the special care and protection of St Monica, and from this patron its name was derived: St Monica's Mission. In 1911 his Lordship secured two Holy Cross sisters to continue and develop the work of the Mission, Sister Jane Frances and Sister Bernadette. The need in the community saw a steady and gradual growth of services provided by The Mission on various locations in Cape Town.

The Sisters had their fair share of challenges to find a suitable (and permanent) location, from greedy landlords and sleeping in school dorms, to missing school teachers and unfit areas. Quoting from the history books: Despite all that, the Sisters were always happy and cheerful, they had no fears and anxieties about robbers and thieves, for there was nothing to take. It seemed Parow was destined from the beginning as a place of impossibilities. But we know how miracles work!

In June of 1918 a cottage was bought nearer to the church, and soon two more were added. The dreaded Spanish Flu of 1918 saw a huge increase in vulnerable children in need of care, and at Christmas they were caring for 20 permanent orphans. The terror of the disease far exceeded normal conception, and the Sisters were looked upon as rescuing angels. More cottages were acquired and, amidst increasing services, the importance of the Holy Cross at Parow began to assert itself with undeniable force. At the end of 1919, there were 40 children in permanent care.

Until the facility was recognised by the State and registered as a Welfare Institution in 1923, the financing of the home was the sole responsibility of the Holy Cross Sisters.

Throughout the years buildings were rebuilt and our home has grown to make allowance to take care of the basic needs of our children, including therapeutic, developmental and recreational programmes.

Our Team

We have a dedicated team of 25 permanent staff, a few outsourced staff members (including the kitchen staff) and a group of committed volunteers, many who were in our care in their younger years.

Our team consists of our manager, a child and youth care supervisor, social workers, a program coordinator, child care workers, administrative, maintenance and cleaning staff.

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Team members

Our Programmes

Our service model includes a Residential Care Programme, a Therapeutic Programme and a Developmental Programme for each child, with detail as follows:


Residential Care Programme

The main aim is to provide residential care focussing on holistic development through:

  • Providing in basic needs: food, clothing, shelter and a sense of belonging
  • Basic life skills
  • Safe hygienic & secure environments for all children
  • Basic healthcare
  • Enrolment in educational institutions
  • Staff development
  • Recreational activities form a big part of our residential care programme where we focus on promoting healthy lifestyles that include sport, drama, arts & craft.
Dad with kids

Therapeutic Programme

The main aim is to provide all children with therapeutic services as follows:

  • Individual assessment & case work on a weekly basis
  • Therapeutic group work addressing developmental needs
  • Trauma counselling
Mom and kids

Developmental Programme

The main aim of this programme is to equip our children and staff with various skills including:

  • Life skills
  • Victim empowerment
  • Family preservation
  • Promotion of children's rights
  • Behaviour management
  • Income-generating activities