LightHouse foundation

about us

Lighthouse Foundation was founded in 2018 and is comprised of a diverse group of staff and volunteers. We are a faith based, non-profit organization situated in the beautiful township of Khayelitsha, in Cape Town, South Africa. With a focus on Youth Development, we seek to impact young people, children, and families. As we became more acquainted with this community, we soon discovered a number of gaps that were hindering this community from flourishing. Namely, high unemployment rates, high school drop out rates, and a lack of after-school programs that could help stimulate the growth of young people instead of having young people loiter in the streets without purpose. We then embarked on a journey to try and solve some of these social problems. Our organisation employs the holistic approach to youth development through Youth Gatherings, After School Programmes and Socio-psycho support.

The benefits of Lighthouse Youth Center will extend beyond the youth who use it. Lighthouse Youth Center will provide the community with a central location where youth can gather safely for recreational activities, receive assistance on their academic assignments, enjoy the positive influence of adult mentors, and have opportunities to study and pursue their dreams.

Through collaborative partnerships with nearby schools, we will be able to focus on the scholastic needs of individual children and assist them in the most effective way. Families will see their children reflecting a positive attitude that includes healthy morals and respectful relationships between a child and an adult. Parents will be able to use Lighthouse as a partner in raising their family.


Meet The Team

Staff | Youth Cafe Facilitators

Staff | Tutors

About Khayelitsha

Consisting of formal and informal settlements, Khayelitsha is home to 2.2 million people in a 18 square mile radius. It is the second largest township in South Africa. The majority of households in Khayelitsha live well below the poverty line, with most being single-mother or grandmother led. Educational opportunities are often underfunded and under-resourced. Teachers are overworked and exhausted, often having to manage multiple classrooms with more than 40 students, leaving little room for face-to-face contact.


Many children cannot follow the English curriculum taught in schools, themselves being Xhosa speaking. For this reason, many fall behind in their studies. With so many children failing, the standard of “passing” is continually lowered, thus dampening the educational system as a whole.


Lighthouse was founded in an attempt to equip and empower young people with life skills so that they can rise above these social burdens. We hope to build up youths to have pride and hope in education and entrepreneurship so they can live self-sufficient lives.




We aim to see young people happy and fulfilled in life, work, and family, as well as to see them make a positive contribution to society.


Empowering Youth. Enriching Communities.

Our Values

Khayelitsha, the 'new home'

Khayelitsha, or ‘new home’ in isiXhosa, is the second largest township in South Africa af­ter Soweto in Johannesburg. It is situated on the periphery of the city of Cape Town (30-35km from the CBD)  and next to the N2 leading into Cape Town. Officially established in 1983, Khayelitsha was constructed to resettle African residents from the Western Cape. Khayelitsha was proposed to be 1070 hectares. The original development plan intended Khayelitsha to be made up of four ‘towns’ which would then consist of four villages, each of which would be made up of 1500 people. The original planned population size was 200,000 people, this was subsequently doubled to 400,000 people.

Khayelitsha currently consists of a minimum of 22 separate settlements. It has the largest single concentration of informal settlements in the City many of which are located on land that is unsuitable for housing as a result of flooding. There is a continued growth in shack numbers, estimated at 10 000 per annum.

Khayalitsha is characterized by old formal areas and new informal/formal areas. The old formal areas built originally by the apartheid government  and include: Bongweni, Ikwezi Park, Khulani Park, Khanya Park, Tembani, Washington Square, Graceland, Ekuphumleni and Zolani Park.

The newer areas have been built up around the older areas (sprawling expansion). They include: Site B, Site C, Green Point, Litha Park, Mandela Park, Makaza and Harare. With the exception of Litha Park, these areas contain a high number of informal settlements (64.4% of households in Khayelitsha live in informal dwellings), RDP houses, and informal backyard dwellings (mainly shacks). More recent informal settlements in Khayelitsha include QQ Section, TR Section, RR Section and Enkanini.

Housing varies from formal state (RDP) houses on a separate stand, informal housing in the backyards of the formal houses and the majority – shacks in informal settlements.


Demographic Profile

Population Size:  2,400,000 inhabitants (Wikipedia 2021)
Racial composition:  Approximately 90.5% Black African, 8.5% Coloured, 0.5% White
Gender Profile:  The female to male ratio in this node is skewed towards females with women forming 52% of the population in Khayelitsha
Population Density:   7748 inhabitants / km² (2005)  Estimated 55,159/km² (2020)
Household Size:    Most households are relatively small with 69.3 % of households consisting of 4 people or fewer (City of Cape Town, 2005).
Employment Status:    Unemployment rate is 54.1% (compared with an average of 29.9% for Western Cape)
Poverty Indicators:  71.8% of households earn below the HSL


Access to services in the area is poor as per the 2005 stats below. In 2021, many houses still do not have access to water, sanitation and safe electricity.

  • 14 521 households do not have access to water.
  • 29 811 households do not have access to sanitation
  • 24% of households do not have access to electricity
  • Refuse removal is efficient – serving approximately 1%of households
  • Housing backlogs in the area are continuously growing with current backlogs estimated to be 245000 unitsand with 16000 new households requiring new houses every year
  • Currently, the transport system of the city is uncoordinatedand fragmented – the proposed Integrated Transport System (Bus Rapid Transport System) has the potential to address this. Currently, most of the residents of Khayelitsha are reliant on taxis and trains to get around the city. Both of these modes of transport, however, are unreliable, unpredictable and often under-serviced.

Current Area Development

Development challenges include:

  • Overcrowded living conditions
  • A lack of land for formal housing projects
  • Increased land invasions (within the context of limited land) – placing pressure on infrastructure
  • Extensive housing backlogs
  • High levels of HIV and AIDS
  • Limited access to affordable public transport
  • Poor skills base of community
  • The informal sector currently employs 22% of the labour force. But, limited information and understanding of this sector means that support to this sector has met with varied success.
  • Reliance on social grants for income (among high levels of unemployment, economic inactivity)
  • High gender based violence and substance abuse​

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