Rise to the Challenge

Open Door logoEstablished 15 years ago, the Open Door has made a real difference to more than 65 000 devastated victims of crime, violence and hardship, helping them rise above their despair and rebuild their lives.

No one is ever turned away
Best known as experts in women and children’s issues, the Open Door turns no-one away, offering counselling and support to men, women and children who are victims of rape, domestic violence, incest and human trafficking.

They also help victims of grief and bereavement and offer trauma counselling for relationship problems, teen pregnancy, alcohol and drug abuse and HIV/AIDS.

CEO of the Open DoorThora Mansfield founded the Open Door and still manages it today, at an age where most of her contemporaries have long since retired.

Initially just Thora, working out of 2 tiny storerooms, 15 years later the Open Door Crisis Care Centre now operates from a 30 roomed house with two satellite centres and a staff of 20, including a full time social worker, a professional nurse, 3 auxiliary social workers, an HIV/AIDS Educator. There are also roughly 20 intern social workers, traumatologists and educationalists.

The Open Door is well-named, offering a 24 hour counselling service to victims of crime at any time of the day or night. Thora herself is frequently called upon by the police in the middle of the night, often several times a week, to assist and counsel traumatised victims of the most disturbing and violent crimes. That takes a particular kind of strength and courage.  I’m in awe of Thora and her staff; I couldn’t do it.  Most of us wouldn’t choose to.

But we can help
Thora has given me her wish list!

 I challenge you to donate one item on this list.

Simply choose what suits your budget, then commit to your donation in the comments box below.  This way, we can try to cover as much of this wish list without duplication – and you get to make a public commitment.

It’s a rather long list, so you’re sure to find something you can give.

The Open Door Wish List

Capital Items

  • 2 vehicles (3 of their cars are between 10 and 12 years old, and the 4th was recently hijacked and written off)
  • 4 computers (the exising computers are very old and need upgrading
  • 1 microwave (to replace the broken one at the Open Door shelter Ikhaya Le Themba
  • 2 printer/ scanners for the  Ikhaya Le Themba Shelter and the Kwa Nuyswa Open Door Satellite
  • 4 Air conditioners for the Open Door Counselling rooms
  • 4 Fans

Security is vital at the Open Door, as Human Traffickers and violent partners often try to reclaim their victims

  • TV security camera
  • Panic buttons
  • 2 Security gates
  • Burglar guards
  • Door bell with access control

Furniture and fittings

  • 1 Carpet (stair runner: the existing carpet on the stairs is torn and dangerous)
  • 2 small desks  (1 for the training room, 1 for the Trauma Room at the KwaDabeka Police Station)
  • 1 small lounge suite or individual chairs (to upgrade the Trauma Room at the KwaDabeka Police Station)

Training for community carers, home-based carers, and interns is an essential part of helping our communities

  • Dark curtains for the training room
  • Music Centre
  • White board and markers
  • Flip Chart

Play Therapy Room Equipment
These items are used in counselling children

  • Puppets
  • Clay
  • Crayons
  • Dress-up Clothing
  • Assorted games, including board games (but not puzzles)
  • Books on child play

Victim Empowerment

  • 10 Safety jackets (For on-site trauma de-briefing)
  • 10 High Density Torches
  • 10 Zip Bags (for carrying gloves, folders and basic medical equipment)

Personal items needed on an on-going basis for clients in the shelter and outreach programmes for victims of abuse, human trafficking.

  • Toothpaste
  • Soap
  • Toothbrushes
  • Tissues
  • Face cloths
  • Body lotion
  • Deodorant
  • Brushes and combs
  • Cosmetics (Lipstick, nail polish, etc)
  • 2 Hairdryers
  • Good quality clothing and shoes
  • Non-perishable food items

Nursery Needs

  • Baby formula
  • Disposable nappies in all sizes
  • Baby clothing in good condition

Printing and stationery

  • Photocopy paper (3 boxes a month)
  • 100 blank CDs
  • Computer ink cartridges: HP 122 XL;

    Brother HL 5350 DN – TN 3290;

    Lexmark 36 XL black;

    Lexmark 37 XL colour

  • Printing of Business cards
  • Printing of Letterheads
  • Printing of Posters

Don’t forget to commit to your donation in the Comments box

If you’d like to find out more about the Open Door, visit their website.  The Open Door Crisis Care Centre is a registered Non-Profit Organisation, and donations are tax exempt. If you’d prefer to make a cash donation, the bank details are:

First National Bank, account no. 508 1112 7775
Branch Code: 221 626 (Crompton Street)

Collection of any donations can be arranged if necessary.  Just leave a note in your comment (make sure you give your email address) and we’ll get back to you.

And please, share this with your networks.  Let’s do our bit to help the Open Door do things we can’t.



  1. Lesley Forbes on October 29, 2013 at 16:57

    Hi there
    I will donate toiletries, and dress up clothes. Also have caps, scarves and T shirts, which I had collected as part of another charity drive – would these help? I will try to gather as many of the consumables as I can.

  2. Linda Liebenberg on October 18, 2013 at 12:35

    Hi Ann, I have 24 wooden educational and fun kids games (not jigsaw puzzles), most new. Will bring them to next KZN meeting. Thanks for organising this. Linda

    • Ann Druce on October 19, 2013 at 11:06

      Brilliant, thanks Linda.

  3. Giselle Chelin on October 7, 2013 at 14:46

    I’ll donate 2 fans. Please can you find out if they want ceiling fans or floor fans. Thanks for organising Ann! I’ll drop it off at the ODDCC.

    • Ann Druce on October 8, 2013 at 07:59

      Thanks Giselle, they’d really like ceiling fans. Great of MJ Media to donate these.

  4. Lyndall Shinbarta on October 7, 2013 at 08:57

    Coming your way 10 High Density Torches… 🙂

    • Ann Druce on October 8, 2013 at 08:00

      Hi Lyndall and Drilit, thanks for donating the torches. Great to see things from further down the list.

  5. Sjanine Tanner on October 4, 2013 at 18:04

    Hi All

    Really enjoyed my first meeting with you all. Was totally inspired.
    Envirosure will donate a photocopier / scanner. I will arrange to drop this off with Thora.
    Will see you all at the next meeting

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 18:23

      Stunning donation, thanks to you and to Envirosure.

  6. Shirley Pender on October 4, 2013 at 16:06

    Thanks Ann for taking the trouble to organise in making this easy for us…..nice to see the response it has already attracted. I will EFT R200 into their bank account and will bring a box of clothing to the next KZNWIB breakfast.

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:50

      That’s fabulous, thanks Shirley.

  7. Shamila Moodley on October 4, 2013 at 15:01

    I will donate 2 x hairdryers – I will drop it off directly with Thora

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:52

      You’re a star, thanks Shamilla

      • Shamila Moodley on October 14, 2013 at 15:41

        add 50 x combs to my donation of the hairdryers – will drop of at ODC
        Thanks for organising Ann!

        • Ann Druce on October 19, 2013 at 11:06

          That’s great, thanks Shamila

  8. Claudine on October 4, 2013 at 14:46

    Kaytech will donate some computers. They’re not brand new but one of them I was using until only a few weeks ago (and I’m not patient with inefficient equipment!).

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:54

      Claudine, that’s fantastic. Thanks so much for organising this – and to Kaytech for agreeing to donate.

  9. Claudine on October 4, 2013 at 13:48

    You’ve gotta love lists for an easy way to get people moving! I think you scored a few brownie points with this one to nullify your traffic offences. Nice work & thanks for making it easy to do good. I’m working on a few things…

  10. Expand a Sign on October 4, 2013 at 13:43

    Expand a Sign will donate every month 8 tins of baby formula and 4 packs of disposable nappies

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:55

      Sharon, that’s brilliant – so good of Expand a Sign to commit to an ongoing donation.

  11. Expand a Sign on October 4, 2013 at 13:37

    Expand a Sign will donate every month, 8 tins of baby formula and 4 packs of disposable nappies.

  12. Mel Gard on October 4, 2013 at 13:25

    I can donate some smalls, but I have also shared the link with an IT company and a stationery company that may be able to help.

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:56

      Wonderful, thanks Mel. Please will everyone else also share this with other companies who may be willing and able to help the Open Door.

  13. Julie on October 4, 2013 at 13:09

    I will try get together some of the consumables listed.
    Thanks for organising

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:58

      Thanks Julie, shout if you need help with getting it to the Open Door.

  14. Lucie Bowyer on October 4, 2013 at 12:27

    Hi, I will definitely be donating goods, most likely toiletries but just waiting for feedback from family to see if they would like to donate. Will confirm asap. Thanks for arranging Ann!

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 17:58

      Thanks Lucie – yes, family and friends can be a big help to Open Door

  15. Val Marais on October 4, 2013 at 11:38

    I will get our sales team to contact Thora, establish what we can assist with, regarding their secuirty requirements.

  16. Lesmarie Williams on October 4, 2013 at 11:38

    I will donate clothing – adults and boys age 8 and 11- will put it together (do you need men’s clothing too?) Also, it is not on the list but do they need coffee mugs?

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 11:46

      Hi Lesmarie

      I’m certain they would love them.

      • Lesmarie Williams on October 4, 2013 at 11:49

        perfect will sort it all out – have forwarded message too….

  17. Val Marais on October 4, 2013 at 11:37

    I will get one of my sales team to contact Thora to assess theiir secuirty requirments and we will then sort out all items that we cover.

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 11:47

      That’s fabulous, thanks Val. Who would have thought that they’d need to be so vigilant about security? But after Thelma’s hijacking, there is no doubt how vital this is. So thanks again for what you can do for them. A big well done to ADT Security.

  18. Nadia Williams on October 4, 2013 at 11:32

    Hi I will donate 20 facecloths and 20 soaps. I will get some clothing together. I will bring to KZN WIB meeting.

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 18:13

      Hi Nadia
      thanks to you and to Krazy Keepsakes.

  19. Joanne Jennings on October 4, 2013 at 11:24

    I will be donating toiletry packs for the victims.

    If anyone would like to donate their MILADYS gift from the October KZNWIB meeting…maybe you too can fill it with a few toiletries.

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 18:14

      Thanks Joanne and Jennings Fine Foods

  20. Roxanne Krause on October 4, 2013 at 11:22

    I’ll bring to next meeting: toiletries: toothpaste, soap, tissues, facecloths, body lotions

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 18:20

      Thanks Roxanne and Footstamp Promotions

  21. Alice Leah on October 4, 2013 at 11:21

    I will donate a box with 5 reams of paper! Will bring to the next meeting!

    • Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 18:19

      Thanks Alice and Mum’s Mail. If you carry 5 reams of paper up the stairs you won’t need to go to gym!

  22. Ann Druce on October 4, 2013 at 10:39

    I’m donating a microwave oven.

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