Dear Friends of Zusakhe
It gives us great pleasure to share with you the first of what is intended to be a quarterly newsletter to keep everyone essentially informed and updated about the major activities and progress at Zusakhe. When you want to go through a wall, someone suggested, you look for a window. Well, we found a window of looking though a brick wall, in a vision that was divinely facilitated. We hope that this newsletter would also serve as a kind of a looking glass through which you also could see the divine miracles that are taking place around us everyday, through the intervention of ordinary folk that are willing to serve and make this world a better place.
Our project manager, Me Patricia Fekema, as seen above, sees the move of the crèche and after-care facility for the children from the Site Five informal settlement to the new premises in January 2009, as fundamental. They are now happily settling in at Waxberry Street, next to the Inkwenkwezi High School. As a matter of fact, the whole of Zusakhe has moved from across Potsdam Rd., which was a major shift for them in focus. We hope that the community will now equally buy into the new situation as they did. Unfortunately Zusakhe is struggling to communicate as they have no electricity or telephones yet and would be most grateful if someone could assist them with this.
Thanks to the generosity of property developer, Mr. Retief Rautenbach, Annette Hales-HR Manager from Safmarine and Cool Maintenance, the facility now consists of a securely fenced-in complex with an office, a kitchen, a sewing room for women in the HIV/Aids support group, and two classrooms, one for 3-4 year olds and the other for the Grade R's. The tables and chairs for the Grade R class were donated by the The Master, wardens and Liverymen of the "Worshipful company of Plaisterers" in London - in partnership with the Rotary Club of Blouberg. De Beers donated 4 sewing machines and 2 overlockers for the support group. They can be seen above, delighting in the reception of the sewing machines. Many a thanks to all the donors for their very essential help and major generosity. We would also like to thank Philippi Trust SA in partnership with the father’s House Christian Fellowship and the Edge AOG Edgemead.
Patricia would also like to express her deepest gratitude to Riaan and the Cool Maintenance team for donating the new classroom of approximately R250 000, and to Ewald van der Westhuizen, for approaching them. Willem van Oudtshoorn is here seen at the inception of the new classroom, with toilets, and just an excellent facility. Besides the crèche for the 3-4 year olds and the Grade R class, the facility also provides after-care supervision and a homework class for more than 100 children.
Thanks must also go to President Arthur Oates and Rtn. Linda du Toit from the Rotary Club of Blouberg, who approached Safmarine for their donation of the huge container for the crèche.
This means that more space and bigger tables and chairs are urgently needed. It also remains a constant challenge to raise sufficient funds to feed the children and to pay the teachers’ salaries. According to Patricia many mothers cannot afford to pay the monthly fees, as the biggest challenges facing them in this community are HIV/Aids and unemployment. Any assistance with this would be most welcome. We recommend that you support or adopt a family. This could be most rewarding.
Currently the support group ladies are trying to generate an income for themselves by making and selling T-shirts. Boost Africa has ordered 13 T-shirts to donate as school uniforms for children in the primary school, Sophakama, and there are negotiations underway to set up a facility for making school uniforms for the children in Inkwenkwezi in June.
An exciting new development is the prospect of providing sports coaching for the children. Besides providing netball and soccer coaching, a former provincial coach will take up rugby coaching of coaches and players, and rugby club management of the existing Dunoon Buffalo’s Rugby Club. These young champions can inspire and become role models for the children at Zusakhe.
Here a few role players can be seen discussing the possibility of a Youth Sports Day.
We have just heard that Investec had donated a substantial amount for wages for our full time staff, as well as a gas stove for cooking in the afternoons for over a hundred teenagers! This would come in real handy during the winter months lying ahead.
With best wishes
- Executive committee: Patricia Fekema (manager): 076 894 4458
- Bertus vd Westhuyzen (chairman): 082 788 4466
- Willem van Oudtshoorn (treasury): 082 770 7011
- Miemsie Moggee (funding): 084 564 1258