Who we are?

Dlalanathi is a Non-Profit Organisation based in South Africa that works to provide psycho-social support for children to increase their participation, belonging, understanding and healing. We work with families to help them support their children.

dollThe context in South Africa and Africa

We work in a context affected by HIV, poverty and loss. South Africa has a high prevalence of HIV and poverty. Many children in this environment will suffer multiple losses – loss of parents, family members, income and their childhood as they care for those who are sick. While physical care and provision of their basic needs is critical, it is equally important to provide psycho-social support to children living with loss.


Our mission is to bring hope and healing to children, their caregivers, families and other caring community members using play for communication in communities affected by HIV, poverty and loss. We do this by mobilising the community and working in partnerships to strengthen adult-child relationships so that safe spaces and positive care is provided.

Using play

Dlalanathi is an isiZulu word meaning “play with us”, which expresses how we use play to achieve wellness for children. Play is children’s natural means of communication, it is fun, it connects people, it helps them to work things out, and to heal. We provide techniques and ways for working with children that facilitate healing and strengthens relationships. We use simple play techniques, listening and reflection that anyone with compassion can bring into the every day care of a child to assist a child to understand what is going on for them.

We provide direct support to children and caregivers affected by HIV, poverty and loss. We train local community people to be the “carers of children” and we enter into strategic partnerships with organisations that work with children all over South Africa and Africa that allows us to scale up our reach so that all children have the opportunity to play and heal.