Victoria Raw Opens Up About Edith Benson

She’s a speech and drama teacher. A model. An incredible neo-soul vocalist and a warm, beautiful soul. Victoria Raw. She’s a force to be reckoned with. This Sunday, Victoria is hosting a fundraiser for the Edith Benson Children’s Home, Lisa Welsh finds out what motivated her to do so below.


You could be forgiven for assuming that Victoria has always had it easy. Her energy is bright and there’s a perpetual smile on her face. But, that isn’t the full story. Today, Victoria is taking the courageous step of describing the first days of her life, motivated by a devastating event that took place in Durban on 20th February 2018.


Victoria was moved to take action after hearing that The Edith Benson Children’s Home had burned to the ground, leaving more than 50 children vulnerable and homeless. I spoke to Victoria to find out the motivation behind her passionate pleas for help from the community.


DIY: Can you tell us about your connection to the Edith Benson children’s home?

Victoria: Edith Benson has a very special place in my heart. I was abandoned in hospital at birth, where I was born 2 months prematurely. Edith Benson took me in and cared for there.


The staff cared for me for 3 months. They remember me as a tiny baby, weighing just 850 grams, in a giant wooden crib. And they longed for me to be a part of a loving family.


Francesca Lederbogge, a social worker connected with the home, arranged for my adoptive parents to visit the orphanage and they willingly claimed me as part of their family – without knowing whether my premature birth would affect my development in the future.


Although I have no memory of this part of my life, it does have an emotional impact. And now my heart breaks for those children that were housed there at the time of the fire. If the home isn’t rebuilt, they won’t have the kind of opportunity that I had, to meet a great family and be adopted.  




You made an urgent appeal for physical donations, the day after the fire. How did that go?

The community has been incredible, with many organisations appealing for donations and organising drop off points. The immediate needs of clothing, baby food, bedding, nappies, toys and more have been generously flooding in.


But that is only the beginning. Edith Benson, a place that was once my home, now desperately needs funding to rebuild and refurbish. The fact of the matter is, these wonderful children now have no place to call a home, have no bed of their own, have no place to meet their future families. This is why I decided to organise a fundraiser to bring people together, bring awareness of the plight of the orphans and raise funds.



Please share the details of the fundraiser. How can the community support this cause?

V: As a musician, it made sense to use my band, Victoria Raw, as the means to build a fundraiser. And, I am so grateful that 7 more incredibly talented Durban acts have agreed to join me to create a musical afternoon for the community to enjoy.


The event is taking place on Sunday 4th March from 1 pm at Northwood Crusaders Sports Club alongside C-Weed Entertainment Promotions/ Soul Sunday Sessions.


The line-up includes Mike Wagner, Jade Aux, The 3am Club, Tatum Holder, Kat and Kirst, Stone Palace and Freddy L. All of these amazing bands are playing for free.


Plus, we have received many generous gifts to offer as raffle prizes on the day.


There is no entrance fee, so we are appealing for donations of whatever people can afford. Every little bit will help.


Victoria Raw is appealing to us, Durban, to please get involved to support the children of Edith Benson. ‘Victoria Raw & Friends’ will be an unforgettable day of music, for a wonderful cause. Spread the word and make a donation if you can. Every cent will be gratefully received.

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