Sparrow Society
Photo Credit: Sparrow Society / Facebook

The Sparrow Society has created a space where they uplift victims of gender-based violence, giving them skills, providing gainful employment and empowering them to build businesses of their own.


South Africa (30 October 2023) – The Sparrow Society is a non-profit company (NPC) celebrating 10 years of making a difference in the lives of women living in Cape Town. Through various programmes, the team have been able to uplift people in need and provide ethically sourced and locally manufactured gifts for some of South Africa’s most well-known businesses.

The NPC was founded in 2013 with the main goal and vision to empower people and address the growing inequality and poverty in South Africa’s most vulnerable communities. It is one of the leading ethical branded corporate gifting and manufacturing companies, based in Cape Town, South Africa.

Today, 10 years later, the NPC has a team of 20 full-time in-house staff members with a network of 150+ women sewing from home. The company has a footprint in the textile manufacturing industry and focuses on creating dignified and viable economic opportunities predominantly for women in a range of industries.

“While our programs vary in nature, they are all motivated by our core goal of empowering women and creating safe spaces for them to work and grow. Various programs have been added over the years as a response to needs that arise within our network and the communities where we work, and are usually targeted to a specific vulnerable group within those communities.”

These programs include:

  • Power Pads provide survivors of Gender-Based Violence with an economic opportunity to earn an income making reusable sanitary pads. The pads are then distributed to girls across Africa who are suffering from Period Poverty;
  • Sparrows Rising aims to employ 10 female youth (ages 18-25) with a job accelerator programme that provides them with work experience and skills development courses for a period of 9 months for which they receive a monthly stipend.
  • The SewBoss Network is an enterprise development programme where the Sparrow Society assists women in setting up home-based sewing businesses. This programme prioritises empowerment, upward mobility, and ownership, taking women who used to be lower-level workers in factories to running their own thriving businesses, with access to global manufacturing contracts.

Moving away from the traditional relief and aid model and into a sustainable and holistic economic empowerment model, the focus is on creating dignified and viable economic opportunities predominantly for women in a range of industries. Sparrow Society provides job skills and entrepreneurship training alongside ongoing business support.

“We also provide a central procurement and marketing hub that is able to manage large contracts, and ensure quality control and logistics to our global clients. This ensures that our training and skills programs remain sustainable and that our beneficiaries rise out of dependency on charity and into a thriving trade that enables them to provide for themselves and their families.”

To assist vulnerable groups they offer:

  • Skills development: Upskilling sewing skills, barista programme and coffee sales, work readiness and entrepreneurship, upskilling in quality, consistency and Reliability as well as customer care and communication.
  • Job creation: Researching and procurement of real economic opportunities for our beneficiaries, recruitment and providing training for beneficiaries to be successful in new job opportunities, and partnerships with international brands.
  • Enterprise development: Creative business skills course and mentorship programme where they learn: basic business skills, tax and compliance, branding and marketing, product development, pricing and sales, and customer service
  • Psychosocial support: Counselling sessions with a social worker, access to various referral pathways, group sessions in the form of workshops and self-care sessions to attend to the mental health of the women.
  • Education: Menstrual health education with young girls, entrepreneurship and business, job readiness, mental health education, sexual reproductive health education etc.

People can donate towards the programmes via the website or they can email at

“We also have a campaign running for 16 Days of Activism where survivors of GBV and Human Trafficking have made Art of Empowerment where the public can bid on the art which will go towards the organisation and the survivor.”

Sources: Supplied
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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