About Us

"Children are the future of the world, let's start with the children."

In 1993, the Goedgedacht Trust acquired the historic Cape Dutch farm, Goedgedacht, originally established in the eighteenth century. Nestled in the Swartland region of the Western Cape, on the slopes of the Kasteelberg, the farm was initially envisioned as a haven for activist social workers engaged in the pursuit of justice.

Over time, Goedgedacht expanded its focus to address various community development issues.

Governed by a board of trustees, the mission of the Goedgedacht Trust now centers on cultivating an environment that fosters positive change in the Swartland. This involves prioritizing the well-being of the earth, children, their families, and broader society.

The Trust aims to revitalize rural communities by providing children and young adults, in particular, with opportunities to become healthy, self-assured, educated, and skilled contributors to their communities. The farm working communities in the Western Cape have long grappled with generational poverty, stemming from historical injustices. Despite considerable progress since South Africa's transition to democracy, the enduring societal impact is evident.

Embracing an Asset-Based Community Development approach, the Trust empowers and supports community members to spearhead their initiatives, fostering self-sustainability and thriving communities. Recognizing that a single project is insufficient to break the cycle of generational poverty, the Trust has implemented interconnected programs accessible to all rural children and youth.

The Trust believes that early intervention, coupled with strategic investments, will result in substantial savings as transformed rural communities contribute socially and financially to the country. The core philosophy remains simple: offer development opportunities, build upon community strengths, and collaborate with stakeholders in the social sector.

In 2008, the Goedgedacht inter-faith chapel emerged as a sacred space, welcoming all to learn and grow—a place where everyone can feel at home. The extensive olive plantation on the farm, now comprising 14,000 olive trees, symbolizes peace and productive unity.
The Christian Institute (CI) Olive Garden, along with the proposed library, contributes symbolically to the memory of those who supported the CI's work in a space actively committed to constructing a more just and equal South Africa.


The Trust seeks to transform rural communities, by presenting children and young adults in particular with opportunities to become healthy, self-confident, educated and skilful members of their communities.

Farm working communities of the Western Cape have long been trapped in the cycle of generational poverty. Many present-day social issues are a result of grave injustices of the past. Great strides have been made since South Africa became a democracy country, but it’s devastating and lasting effect on sociaty is evident.

By using an Asset Based Community Development approach, we encourage and support community members to drive their own initiatives with the aim of growing and developing into self-sustainable and thriving communities.

Because one good project alone is not enough to help farm working communities break the cycle of generational poverty, the Trust developed several interlinked programmes accessible to all rural children and rural youth.

Goedgedacht Trust supporting rural children
Goedgedacht Trust South Africa rural upliftment


We believe that early intervention with sound investment will lead to massive savings through transformed rural communities contributing socially and financially to the country at large. We are deeply concerned about the tremendous challenges communities face as a result of poverty, but our philosophy remains simple: provide opportunities for development, recognise and build on community strengths, and collaborate with stakeholders in the social sector.

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