Hellen – Working in the Community

11th Jan, 2017

Photo by Emma O'Brien

Hellen, Sheba and Molly

In the severely impoverished communities of Johannesburg South, one woman spends every spare moment striving to improve the well-being of the animals (and their people) living in these areas. Hellen White, of Hellen – Working in the Community, supports over 200 animals, assisting with top-up feeding, sterilisations, vaccinations and veterinary care. Perhaps most important of all, she educates the community in how to ensure that their companion animals are taken care of the best they can be in their circumstances.

In 2009, Hellen was approached by a family in Naturena, near Soweto. Hellen says, “Could you hesitate when someone implores: ‘PLEASE can you help me, ma’am? My dogs are dying; I need food for them’? The members of this single parent family are struggling to survive themselves, yet, bless them, they asked for food and help for their dogs, not themselves. These dogs had a home; they had a make-shift shelter; they had morsels of pap; they had a parent and her three children to love them. And, now that they have me, they have proper kennels; they have proper food; they have veterinary care.”

Hellen – Working in the Community registered as an NPC (Non-Profit Company) in 2013, enabling her to obtain further assistance for her project. Hellen relies on donations from friends and family, as well as other kind supporters; in 2014, with the assistance of Linda Hanna, the Hellen – Working in the Community charity shop opened its doors in Bellavista, Haddon.

Hellen is inundated with requests from the community to assist with their animals, be it feeding, sterilisations, or veterinary care. To tackle the root cause, the primary focus is on sterilisations and inoculations, using local vets to assist. When needed, she uplifts animals, places them with fosters, and then rehomes them.

It’s a never-ending battle, but, day after day, Hellen White tackles it head-on, making a difference everywhere she goes.

Wish list

  • Good second-hand clothing, bric-a-brac, costume jewellery, DVDs, books, and other household items which are sold at either Tail and Whiskers Charity shop in Edenvale or the Hellen – Working in the Community charity shop in Johannesburg South.
  • Food is always welcome, as well as dishes and bowls for food and water.
  • Kennels, old or new, are always in need to put roofs over heads for dogs living outside.
  • Monetary donations towards sterilisations are most welcome.


Hellen Working in the Community – FNB: 62444806444 – Branch Code: 250455 (Parktown)

For more information, please contact Hellen – Working in the Community on 082 412 3491, email hmwhite@mweb.co.za and follow her on Facebook at ‘Hellen White – In the Community’.