Vistarus was founded in 1998 by Kobus and Lynette Jacobs who saw the need to take homeless and suffering families off the streets and to help with the restoration and putting dignity back into their lives. They bought over the old Railway Hostel in Sydenham, which after endless problems, was filled with gangsters and even a shebeen. The health inspector wanted to close this building but Kobus and Lynette felt that this was the place they had to buy to help with the upliftment of the community and the occupants in body, soul and spirit, with specific reference to bringing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, teaching of life skills and creating job opportunities. Their vision was to create a place of safety where every person could experience equal opportunities in all aspects of life.
After countless battles and obstacles the vision still lies ahead, but there are now many landmarks along the road, that celebrate the successes enjoyed along the walk to empowerment and restoration. Some of these facilities and services we now have and offer include, our TV lounge for the occupants, a well-stocked library, Doctor’s surgery, Dental assistance, crèche, clothing bank, counselling facilities, an efficient laundry room, a kitchen that prepares on average 28000 meals a month and a computer and Abet class that offer educational growth options for our occupants and the immediate area.
We mainly open our facility to the Port Elizabeth and surrounding areas but have an open heart for all people that is in need from other areas if we have open beds available.
Our goal at Vistarus is to uplift the community with reference to the spreading of the gospel of Jesus Christ, teaching of life skills creating employment opportunities and putting dignity back into the lives of the homeless. We provide a safe environment by identifying their needs through counselling and support.
Providing a safe haven for impoverished, homeless and addicted people of all races in order to reintegrate them into society.
To restore the broken mind, body and soul through giving hope and spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ
The aim is the restoration of body, mind and soul. People that are totally destitute, former drug addicts, abused women and children, pensioners, people affected by the HIV/Aids as well as those that just have nowhere else to go, have been successfully assisted by the center to return to the mainstream.
We also support the following
Getting them involved in one of our job creation on projects
Life skill courses (improving life skills)
Rebuilding self confidence and self image
One on One counselling and group classes
Providing all necessities, such as food, clothing, toiletries for free
Creating a safe warm and homely atmosphere for parents and children
Providing a safe daycare environment for our children
Assisting there unemployed in finding employment after 3 months
Subsidising accommodation once successfully through program and sure of a permanent job