On Tuesday 25 April 2023, PatchSA held a Strategic Planning meeting in Rondebosch, Cape Town which was attended by all members of the PatchSA Board, Staff and consultants.

Present at the meeting and appearing in the photograph above were:
Top row from l to r: Mrs Margaret Louw (Bookkeeper), Dr Mehnaaz Ally, Busi Nkosi, Mrs Aimée Kinsley (Treasurer & Admin Support), Prof Jan du Plessis, Tracy Rawlins (Education& Training Manager), Mr Malcolm Kling (Funds Procurement Consultant)
Middle Row from l to r: Mrs Melissa Williams-Platt, Dr Michelle Meiring (Chair), Ms Sue Boucher (Programme & Communications Manager), Dr Kalr-Günter Technau
Front row from l to r: Dr Samantha Govender (Vice Chairperson) and Ms Thaaniyah Gydien

After welcoming all to the meeting, Michelle gave a brief overview of the history of PatchSA which can be found on our website. PatchSA, was officially presented on the 18th of September 2013 to the palliative care community at the joint HPCA and African Palliative Care Association (APCA) conference in Johannesburg making this our 10th year of operations.

SWOT Analaysis

The group then participated in a SWOT analysis of PatchSA, where those present were asked to list the organisations Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. The most important messages to come out of this activity were the following:


  • A good reputation and a growing awareness of our work amongst health professionals and the public
  • Dedicated staff who focus on the work
  • Our resources such as the 2 Bettercare Books we have published.
  • Our online courses
  • Our good relationship with our funders


  • Dependency on one major donor
    limited national and multi-disciplinary representation on our board and committees.
  • Limited reach with our message about the need for children’s palliative care


  • To grow and develop the family and community streams
  • To advocate for children’s palliative care
  • To make children’s palliative care resources more culturally relevant for all South Africans
  • To participate in the development of the Palliative Care Guidelines
  • To integrate more children’s palliative care into hospitals and clinics


  • We need to strengthen our governance structures
  • We need to widen our funder base
  • We must consider succession planning
  • We need to focus on sustainability

PatchSA in 2027

Asked to consider what PatchSA would look like in 2027, the following was minuted:

  • Have tool to measure children who need palliative care (research in SA is virtually non-existent) Establish 2-3 topics of research (R in Raise). Come up with a research agenda for SA (national perspective) – what are our priorities.
  • Provision of funding for research posts
  • To have a more integrated network, especially with representation from all the provinces
  • To have more members with multi-disciplinary skills (e.g. physio’s, OT’s etc)
  • To have appointed a CEO/Operational Manager for PatchSA.
  • To be more sustainable and with growth in fund-raising capabilities.
  • To have more practical resources for professionals and caregivers
  • A stronger and more robust family and community network
  • To have created greater awareness of Children’s Palliative Care and what it is
  • To have National guidelines published

Other topics under discussion at this meeting included developing a new structure for the board and management with sub-committees for each of the objectives of the organisation, led by members of the board and future fund-raising activities.