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The Halli Trust Story

How did Halli Trust start on 17 September 2010?

There are so many great stories/happenings/events to share but this is how Halli Trust started. These are only some of the highlights for the years past. Our AGMs (booklet is on the website) are proof of the impact that Halli Trust has made over the years, but this is the beginning…

I, Heidi Naude have to start at the beginning with this story, as this is how the pieces of my life puzzle fitted into each other. We started Halli Trust when I was at the age of 42. I was born and raised in Namibia. After Matriculating, I came to the Western Cape. I studied Food and Clothing for two years at Tygerberg Technical College. I have worked and had my own catering business, then became a full-time mother, and ran a few home-based sales of CDs and jewellery.  I then went to work at a toy shop in Somerset Mall for almost two years. While working at the toy shop, I realized the effect that a mascot has in children’s lives when doing educational talks. I also realised the needs in the community, and it just touched my heart in such a way that I felt this is what I had to do!!!

My dad (Daan Meyer), a farmer in Namibia, passed away at the age of 83 in December 2008, my husband (Martin Naude - Founder) said why do we not start our own Non-Profit to give back to our community? We took some of my inheritance and started the planning of Halli Trust.

Dr. Surita Roux (medical doctor) joined us immediately and shared a wealth of wisdom as she had worked at an NPO for many years. Her love for animals and her ability to teach people to take care of their animals was infectious.

I then needed to get a name for our Trust: I contacted Cheryl Hanekom, a good friend of mine, and explained to her what we had in mind. She looked up our name in the Greek/Hebrew translation Bible. Halli means “unexpected gift and blessing”. The name immediately resonated in my heart. I just loved it, and it was different. We can receive an unexpected gift and blessing and give an unexpected gift and blessing when we help someone.

With baby steps - or shall I say giant steps - Halli Trust started to come to life…

Remember, I had no knowledge about NPOs and what this entails. It was difficult some days. I prayed a lot, asking for guidance, knowledge, and wisdom. I still struggle some days as I had to learn how to run an NPO, and how to be like a social worker, how to advance my IT skills, how to apply for grants and run Halli Trust like a For-Profit, as there are not many differences between a Non-Profit and For-profit.

I wanted a mascot for us as well, after realizing the impact of a mascot from the toy shop. After watching the movie Hachiko as a family in 2010, I decided to make our mascot an Akita Japanese Dog. I loved the fact that his character is loyalty and friendship as that is what we want to achieve: to build friendships and relationships with the children.

Louis Niemand from LifeSize Designs in Monte Vista, Cape Town, is a Mascot designer. We met at a coffee shop one morning, he did some drawings right there and it looked amazing. Louis started with the creative process to make our stunning mascot. We named him Halli. I was super excited to see Halli our Mascot for the first time… and he looked absolutely, super awesome!!! I wanted him to be a cool, teenage dude.

I created a creed to teach the children:

  • I am Smart
  • I am Kind
  • I am Super Important
  • Friends’ forever Halli
  • I have respect always respect!

At the time we used our personal vehicle as a Halli Trust car, we covered the car in paw prints. The idea behind it was that Halli walked over the car. I also wanted the children to feel safe and that they can build a relationship with us/Halli and trust us to talk about bad secrets in their lives.

I decided to have the office in our home in Somerset West.  We have 3 x Wendy houses that we use as extra storage areas.

I chose the colour green, as it resembles growth, harmony, and freshness. A load of paperwork had to be sorted out and finalized to get the Trust registered and going. All the documents were registered through lawyers. They assisted us with the initial paperwork. Exceed Somerset West offered to help us and is currently our auditing firm that assists us with all necessary documents. With the help and input of many resources we managed to build our own NPO, step by step.

We showed Halli to the world on 17 September 2010 at Somerset West Primary School. (The 17th of September will always be Halli’s and Halli Trust’s Birthday)

What a day! We were excited, and proud, our hearts were filled with gratitude. The inheritance that I got from my dad, the support from my husband, children, friends, and the Halli Team made it all possible!

We needed a volunteer to be our Mascot, Halli. Marichje de Necker was our first Halli in 2010. Thereafter, we had a few volunteers walking in the shoes of Halli.

Gloria Hungana from Nomzamo joined the Halli Team in 2010. Gloria, Surita and I were the team behind Halli Trust in the beginning. As a family, they are making such a difference in their communities and lead by example. I have learned a lot from Gloria, and I will always be grateful for her valuable input in Halli Trust.

In 2010, we registered the Trust for Educational and Community Involvement. Surita Roux’s passion to help animals started as a little flame, and she was making such a difference in the lives of so many animals in the early years of Halli Trust. Therefore, we registered Rehabilitation and Caring of Animals in February 2014 as the third function of Halli Trust.  We started to get more structure and it was great to be able to assist families and their animals to make an even bigger difference.

The Educational Involvement is with Halli, our Mascot, and we do it on 

Wednesday and Thursday mornings. This is an hour and 30 minutes program at schools with dancing and educational talks. It is amazing to have a mascot to teach the children: they understand the message more clearly, and he brings in so much fun and the children absolutely love him.

We currently do nine different talks at schools, and it is all life skills programs. I always say mommy and teacher can talk but if Halli joins in the programs, it creates a different dimension. Immediately the children listen more attentively and enjoy it more. They will say Halli said: “Nobody must touch my private parts” and Halli does not even talk!

As far as Community Involvement, we decided to focus only in the Helderberg area, due to limited resources. Our focus is not on handing out donations but to make a measurable difference in people’s lives. We have Community Representatives in the communities. They assess families or individuals at their homes and this, with the 10-page assessment form, gives a clearer picture of how we can best help them. We also have once-off people that we help – especially fire victims or just individuals/families that need a break from difficult circumstances. We assist the family/individual with donations we receive for a short period of time. If we have nothing in our stores (groceries or clothing), we wait until we can help them.

I do not agree with just handing out food, because the child or individual learns nothing by standing in a queue with a dirty plastic container, dirty pajamas, and not being taken care of hygienically. The parent continues with the substance habit and the child gets taught to go for hand-outs. The result is that these people never start working or doing anything for themselves, because the “hand-outs” will look after my children – that is how they see it. We even have people in some communities that will not find employment as they are so scared someone is going to hand out items during the day and they will miss out on it. I want Halli Trust to make a measurable difference. We cannot change lives of hundreds of individuals or families, but we can have an impact on one family/individual/child’s life and if they grab the opportunity, we are able to change a generation!

I listened to a tape-recording many years ago about missionaries. Peter Hammond talked about Guilt Manipulation and Poverty. This was really a mind-opening talk for me as a young adult. This talk was about giving responsibly, and about making a measurable difference. In his talk he encouraged people to give to registered NPO’s/churches and not to give money to people or to just hand out food because you simply encourage people to keep on begging and wanting more and more. I also call it baby bird syndrome, the more the little ones are chirping (screaming) in the nest the more the mom and dad needs to feed them.

In the Bible, 2 Thessalonians 3:10 says: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat”. Yes, we need to be responsible and be good stewards with our finances as well. Therefore, my passion is to make a measurable difference and not to just tick a box to say what was done. Colossians 3:23 says: “And whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as if for the Lord and not for people”. There are many scriptures to reach out and help the poor but for me it's also to reach people that have lost hope. When you lose hope for today you cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel. One of our team members Gloria Hungana always says: “Halli Trust brings HOPE!

Additional Community Involvement – Halli Clubs and Needlework Club

The Halli Club is for children between ages 8 and 10 years old. The club consists of about 100 children in both Smartie Town and Nomzamo where gatherings take place.

We get together monthly on a Friday afternoon.

The Halli Leaders Club is for 11-year-old children who show leadership skills and attended every gathering during their last year of the Halli Club. The Leaders Club also gets together monthly. They will be part of the Leaders Club till they turn 18 years old.

We have Homework and Reading clubs on a weekly basis for the children during the term. We want to invest in these awesome children as much as we can with the resources that we have.

We used to do Christmas Parties for 800 children yearly, but we stopped it as I wanted to rather make a measurable difference in the lives of children. Yes, it is great for a child to receive a gift, but sometimes children miss the message and just want something. I then felt, “let us do things a bit differently” so we could bless them but also have an educational experience. Now we can have these awesome children under our wings at the Halli Clubs, and we can teach them to be forerunners for their generation.

My mother made all my clothes as a child and that stirred a new passion in me, and that is when we decided to have a Needlework Club. As I have witnessed, needlework can have a huge impact on women’s lives. This is also to empower women through a sisterhood to learn a new skill. This skill can be implemented to start their own sewing business, and to be creative at home. These ladies get together weekly and have a mentor who teaches them needlework.

The great thing about the Rehabilitation and Caring of Animals, is that we educate so many children and adults to take proper care of animals. That is to have food and water in the shade, and to make sure their animal has a safe warm dry place to sleep. We do sterilizations when we have funds available.

We also do Doggy Care days in the community, where we go in and dip the animals and hand out food where help is needed.

Many people have asked us, “why animals as well?” as there are so many Animal NPOs in the Helderberg area already, but if we help a family, and they have animals, we help the animals and vice versa.

Halli Trust is a team of friends taking hands - ordinary people living out our passion and making a difference in our communities. With God’s wisdom, guidance, and provision, we can do what is important and we grow with baby steps. We, as a team, have breakfast and lunch together and this is a precious time for us. This is where we care for each other and laugh together.

We had to bring structure to Halli Trust to see where and how people fit into the team. We got in Trustees, as it was part of the governing body of the Trust. We decided to bring in Representatives for the different areas that we are registered for, and volunteers that will help us to do more work.

I had a very valuable conversation one day with someone that works in the Non-Profit industry for many years, and he said to me: “Heidi, you are the CEO of Halli Trust.” It was a mind shift for me as I then understood we needed to have structure and give people responsibilities. This was one of the greatest pieces of advice that I have heard from an outsider. I also needed to believe in myself and step up if I wanted to make this work.

The Halli Trust Representatives/Volunteers work in different areas of the Helderberg. The Representatives are the core of Halli Trust. The team consists of Community, Animal and Needlework Representatives. We have volunteers that run the Homework and Reading Clubs.

The Trustees play a crucial part to make sure Halli Trust runs properly. The Office Staff runs the daily admin of Halli Trust.

When a team member retires or move on from Halli Trust, they remain part of the Halli Family! We had many amazing people part of the Halli Team over the years.

Volunteers play a very important part. It is also very important for people to volunteer. Each volunteer and team member needs to complete an application form and go for a name clearance before becoming a volunteer. Over the years, we have learned to be careful of who we let in, as not everyone volunteering has good motives. We need to protect Halli Trust, the children, and adults that we work with in the community. We work very hard to promote Halli Trust and build relationships, so that no volunteer can say or experience anything bad about Halli Trust.

It is really hard work to run an NPO. You need to have so many documents in order. It is important for us to be transparent, therefore our finances are available on our website.

We have decided to do a Quarterly Report every term to show what we did during the term, and all the donations that we received. Everything gets written down because we want people to trust us with any donation that comes in. Our Representatives hand in documents every term of how many children/individuals/families/animals/needlework they assisted during the term, we call it a “giving”.

We undergo annual financial audits, which we submit together with an annual progress report to the Department Social Development. Over the years we perfected many meetings and documents, to make sure the Trust runs smoothly with integrity and transparency. Many documents are needed to be able to apply for funding. We also need to do a yearly AGM and send in a progress report to the Department Social Development to keep our NPO number active and our finances to be audited by Chartered Accountants/Auditors. We must send a form 29 of each volunteer to the Department of Social Development in Pretoria to make sure our team members are not on the pedophile list. We are extremely grateful to Exceed Somerset West for all the guidance they have given us over the years and for doing our yearly audit.

I listened to a TED Talk a few years ago, and the person said, “it’s more difficult and complicated to run a Non-Profit than a For-profit”. Luckily, I am a fighter and not someone that gives up easily. Although it is really challenging at times, and I do get frustrated and emotional, I am in this for the long run.

There are a few values and morals that are very important to me: To build relationships, to be real, to be honest, transparent, have integrity, to be professional and to care and bring hope. With God’s grace and guidance, we can do this, as we cannot do all of this by ourselves. God has planted this seed in our hearts, and He is the one that keeps us watered and going.

We have Halli Ways for each volunteer and active Halli Trust members. Halli Ways are morals, values, and standards that we want and expect of each Halli Trust member and volunteer. We are leaders and examples for so many people that look up to us. If you wear a green t-shirt you are a leader, and it needs to be taken seriously. There are also Halli Ways to protect Halli Trust members and volunteers because we give so much of our time and ourselves, that we need to make sure our team members do not get charity fatigue. Therefore, it is important to take care of each other and to protect the team.

I dream of having our own “Green House” as the Halli Trust office. I see the office with a coffee shop, vintage shop, needlework space, training facilities, computer area for children to do CV’s or homework, offices, and a lounge/dining room area, a fully functioned office. An office where lots of great things happen…

We as a team sit around the table having breakfast or lunch and always say that it would be awesome to have a long table to sit at and create memories, dreams, to plan and debrief.

I am super grateful for this awesome company, ATS Transport, that joined us in October 2016. We had our first Golf Day that year. With the help of ATS Transport, this event was a huge success. Jaco Conradie, his family and his business has made a remarkable impact on Halli Trust and supported us so tremendously. I have learnt so much from him. He has taken Halli

Halli Trust received a tremendous blessing in December 2016 - a Ford Tourneo Bus sponsored by ATS Transport - Jaco Conradie and Johnny Bosch, Mountsure Brokers - Niel Koch, and Sanlam Wealth - Philip Baumgardt.

I was over the moon when Jaco announced that they are donating the bus to Halli Trust at our Golf Day in 2016. This was the biggest surprise I have ever received! I am super grateful for this bus! I always say this is our blessing! I prayed for the bus for two years and God made it possible through these amazing men and their families! Such a huge amazing special blessing!!!

The bus makes a huge difference and is a big help when collecting and dropping off donations and transporting volunteers.

Over the years we have partnered with many amazing people/companies and NPOs and we are super grateful for the difference that they made, not just for us, but for our communities.

I cannot begin to express our gratitude towards all the donations, monthly, once-off financial donations and support from so many amazing people in our community. There is something special when people believe in what you do and when they see your honesty (to trust our NPO with the work we do), it is humbling and heartwarming that they trust you with what they give, and that we at Halli Trust can be a blessing to others. That is why I love the meaning of Halli - “unexpected gift and blessing.” We can receive and we can give.

I love to be in our communities around the Helderberg area. The children fight to hold my hand, to get hugs and sometimes a sweetie. A few years ago, Gloria’s little girl gave me the name Nolothando which means “I have enough love to give.” How amazing is that, as my name, Heidi, also means love.

A Non-Profit organization has the advantage of bringing a community together. Although it is so difficult to teach people to “give responsibly” and to give to a reliable NPO, rather than handing out at the street corners. As an NPO, we strive to work with other organizations to be able to make a difference in our communities. It is also important to me that we make a measurable difference in the lives of our precious communities.

We are grateful for all the friends that talk about Halli Trust and share our posts on social media. They make the load a little lighter for us. Over the years I have faced many challenges and difficulties, but I strive to develop Halli Trust into a NPO which will leave a legacy.

Lean and Sachia Venter offered to give Halli Trust a facelift, with a brand-new logo in September 2017.

We also changed the look of our mascot in 2019 to the more teenage version of the Akita Japanese Dog.

I was asked a question by a little girl in Nomzamo one day, “Aunty, why are you white?” I did not know what to answer her and I just said: “Lovie, I think Jesus wanted me to be white.”  Then I asked her if she wanted me to stay here with her? And she said, “No, you must stay where you are.”  I was puzzled by her question, and then Gloria and Victoria (my domestic worker) explained to me that she could not understand why I am in Nomzamo all the time as she has never seen another white person doing so much for the community. It brought tears to my eyes.

I have scratched in the bins in the beginning with my gardener for bottles and tins, to hand in for recycling, to get money for Halli Trust. My husband said to me: “My wife, you are crazy!” But this also opened other doors for Halli Trust. I understand how it feels when you sit in front of a family that has nothing to eat. My family home where I grew up also burnt down when I was 16 years old. I understand how it feels for a fire victim that just lost everything. Life is hard sometimes, but we still have choices. My life scripture is Deuteronomy 30:19 – 20, Choose life! We all have a choice, but to hold out a hand and to say “I am here, take my hand” brings hope to a person.

I cannot begin to tell you the fulfillment, gratitude, and humbleness that I feel when we help an individual/family. Gloria always says: “We bring hope!” and I realized when you lose hope, you only live for this moment and not for tomorrow. But by being there, listening, teaching, and praying for the individual/family, we make a huge difference! Sometimes we only need to help once, and they will be okay. Although my dream is not necessarily their dream, we still expect the individual/family to work with us, to ensure a big difference in their lives.

I have learnt a lot in the years, and I have grown emotionally and mentally as a person.

In fact, in all aspects of my life, I am a better person today. How can you not be? If you have an impact on other peoples’ lives, it changes you!!! It is an extremely humbling feeling when the children run up to my car or when they see me…. calling out  “Halli, Halli, Halli!” It is just so unbelievably awesome!!! Reaching out to hold my hand or to give me hugs or when we stop at a school, where we have visited before, the children spontaneously start to chant “Halli, Halli, Halli!” jumping up and down. I love what I do!!! I do not want to change it for anything!!!

I shall keep on fighting to make a difference! I will not give up!

This is one of my theme/motivation songs, that keeps inspiring me to go further and to reach higher… “I won’t give up” by Jazon Marz.

Halli Trust has already made such a difference in our community! Together as a team we are growing and learning new things every day.

I want to see Halli Trust as one of the most successful Non-Profit organizations in the Helderberg area.

May you feel inspired by our Halli Trust story! To also go out and make a difference!! Or to get involved with us! Never give up, do not see failures and mistakes, see them as opportunities to keep on and fight the good fight! Learn from it and educate, if necessary, but keep on making a difference!

I am extremely grateful for what we have accomplished so far! God has been good to us, and He has put all our plans/dreams/visions into place. I still have big dreams for Halli Trust. He is truly the heart and passion behind Halli Trust. We would not be able to do what we do without the presence and wisdom of Father God!

He started this small little flame in my heart, and it is growing daily!!!

I want you to know that:

  • You are AWESOME!!!
  • You are smart!!!
  • You are kind!!!
  • You are super important!!!

Thank you for taking the time to read our story!

Go to our Website for more information or to our Facebook page for more stories These are some of the highlights that I shared with you, but we have many more stories and photos on our Facebook page, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media sites. We have fundraising goals and volunteer opportunities, make Halli Trust your NPO/Charity. Take our hands and make us stronger to make a bigger difference.


Do your bit by making a difference, remember it starts with YOU or join the HALLI TRUST TEAM!

Big warm hugs and Friends Forever
Heidi Naude
082 339 6876
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