Our Story


Ray and Sue Haakonsen

Ray and Sue Haakonsen

Bryan and Anita Geurink

Bryan and Anita Geurink

In June of 2001, Beautiful Gate Lesotho was founded by Ray & Sue Haakonsen in response to a critical problem in Lesotho. Initially Beautiful Gate Lesotho opened its doors to 7 children, providing safety and care for abandoned, HIV/AIDS affected, and other vulnerable children. For just over 6 years Beautiful Gate operated within the family of ministries of Youth With a Mission and under the umbrella of Beautiful Gate International. During that time, Beautiful Gate Lesotho developed its own unique identity as an Interdenominational Christian organization. In January of 2008, our board followed the lead of Beautiful Gate Ministries International to fully embrace our new identity separate from Youth With a Mission, and moved into the next season as an independent organization.

In October of 2011, Ray and Sue stepped down as the directors of Beautiful Gate Lesotho and Bryan and Anita Geurink from Michigan, USA, took up the role. They served as co-directors for six years.  

In January of 2017, Bryan and Anita handed over the directorship to Peter and Lindiwe Kirstein.

Peter and Lindiwe Kirstein

Peter and Lindiwe Kirstein

Since Beautiful Gate Lesotho’s establishment in June 2001, we have...

  • cared for over 460 children, primarily aged 0-5 years, who have been abandoned, neglected and/or orphaned.
  • Nearly 350 children have been adopted locally or internationally, or reunited with a biological family member.
  • Sadly 41 have passed away while under our care, mainly due to AIDS related illnesses.

Before June 2007, we were only able to accommodate 25 children at any given time due to limited space. After the completion of our new buildings on a new site in 2007, we can now accommodate up to 75 children, and typically have over 65 children at any given time.

The care centre is comprised of...

  • 5 Children's Homes
  • A Play Therapy Centre
  • A Medical Clinic
  • A Chapel
  • A Preschool
  • Administration Buildings
  • Maintenance Buildings
  • Volunteer Housing both short and long term
  • A Memorial Wall to honor the lives of the children that have passed away

Our operational costs and practical needs have been mainly met by interested individuals, churches, some funding organizations and small businesses. We currently have nearly 45 local care, maintenance, and administration staff as well as a handful long term volunteers.


Mission: 
“To glorify God by providing opportunities for children and families to grow spiritually, emotionally, physically and intellectually.” 

We aim to do this by: 

  • Providing residential and medical care to abandoned, HIV/AIDS affected and other vulnerable children aged 0 to 5 years.
  • Networking with the Government and other Organisations to advocate for the rights of children and the establishment of an effective adoption/foster care program in Lesotho.
  • Excelling in the provision of Christ-centered education programs.
  • Training and supporting our staff in: 
    • Practical care giving to abandoned HIV/AIDS affected babies and OVC’s 
    • Psychosocial Support 
    • Discipleship and Mentoring. 

Beautiful Gate subscribes to the following collective and overarching values: 

  • Christ-centred: Our lives and conduct will be in line with God's Holy Word. We are a faith-driven organisation. 
  • Respect: We value each individual. We embrace and foster an environment of love, dignity and respect toward all people. 
  • Team Work: We create an environment of mutual trust, team spirit and responsibility.
  • Accountability: We are accountable to God, to our beneficiaries, to each other and to those who support us. 
  • Excellence: We are committed to ongoing learning that will continuously improve our standards. 

Legal

We are registered with the Government of Lesotho as a Society not for Gain (Reg. # 2003/68) and are legally accountable to the board of Beautiful Gate Lesotho made up of Basotho and International members