FOSTER needs your support

FOSTER Logo

Funding appeal for fire hazard reduction: Golf Day at ST Francis Bay

Friends of the St Francis Nature Areas (FOSTER www.foster.org.za) is a non-governmental organization that has been in existence for 20 years. The major objective of FOSTER is the management of a network of some 250 ha of nature reserve on behalf of the Kouga Municipality and Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency.

To date FOSTER has cleared these reserves of highly inflammable invasive alien plants (principally Acacia cyclops or rooikrans), established a system of peripheral and interior access routes for firefighting, established a network of footpaths and implemented a wide range of outreach programmes. These activities are described on our website.

In order to conduct these activities, FOSTER needs to raise funds from the public since local and provincial government do not have the capacity to manage these reserves nor do they provide FOSTER with any funding. Over the past seven years, FOSTER has raised R1.2 million to finance its activities. The accounts of the organization are in good order and FOSTER is registered with SARS as a public benefit organization.

We believe that the routine and ongoing management by FOSTER to remove invasive alien plants, manage and implement access routes for fire control, and implement controlled burns for fuel reduction, has greatly reduced the fire hazard in the Greater Cape St Francis area. In addition to managing its reserve network, FOSTER has played a catalytic role in recruiting Working for Water to clear alien vegetation on other public and private land in an around St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis. These properties include the “Thatch Farm” immediately west of Santareme Bay and Rocky Coast Farm that abuts Cape St Francis. Without these interventions, the fire damage of homes in the region would have been massive.

The recent fires in our region have placed a great burden of FOSTER to implement activities to reduce the fire hazard in the future. These include the removal of many tons of dead plant material that accumulated with the widening of fire access routes, and the control of the massive recruitment of seedlings of alien rooikrans plant that will ensue following the winter rains.

FOSTER has estimated a budget of R150 000 to implement these activities. We are appealing to individuals and organization to donate generously to the upcoming golf day in order to contribute to our efforts to reduce the future threat of fire-related damage and destruction of properties in the Greater Cape St Francis area.

FOSTER GOLF DAY

Saving St Francis

St Francis Bay Property Owners Logo

We invite all owners of properties in St Francis Bay to this meeting to be held in
(Scroll down for Agenda)

Johannesburg

PLACE:         Inanda Country Club

DATE:            21st July, 2016

TIME:             18:00 – 20:00 pm

St Francis Bay

PLACE:         The Links Golf Club

DATE:            Monday, 25th July, 2016

TIME:             17:30 for 18:00 pm

Port Elizabeth

PLACE:         The Old Grey Club,  Lennox Street

DATE:            Tuesday 26th July, 2016

TIME:             17:30 for 18:00 pm

The Agenda for all three meetings is as follows:

  1. Restoration of SFB’s Infrastructure

    i. Beach Repairs
    ii. Spit Repairs
    iii. Phase 2: River Beach and Spit
    iv. Master Plan for:

    – Roads
    – Stormwater Drains
    – Sewerage

  2. Kouga Municipality
  3. Funding Strategy

YOUR PROPERTY, YOUR INVESTMENT…….PLEASE JOIN US.

RSVP: Jacky Green at contact@sfbresidents.org

Telephone; 042-200-1404

Cows, pigs and goats posing a danger on R330

Accidents waiting to happen on R330!

There has been much talk around the village again on the presence of cows, goats and pigs wandering across the R330 between Tarragona turnoff and the end of the informal settlement travelling towards Cape St Francis. Certainly these animals pose a danger to vehicles and more than one accident can be attributed to a cow or pig wandering onto the road. A local publican had a lucky escape recently not only from suffering serious injury in an accident that resulted major damage to his vehicle trying to avoid hitting a cow but then had to fend off a marauding mob intent on robbing him. But this article is not about that incident but rather about the reality of the dangers of this short stretch of road.

Keeping farm animals without approval is in contravention of the Kouga Environmental Health By-Laws (read PART TWO – KEEPING OF ANIMALS AND POULTRY) and it is almost certain none of those keeping these farm animals have this approval.  This is in contravention of the by-laws but can these by-laws be enforced? It seems unlikely!

It is doubtful the Kouga Municipality is going to do anything about this problematic situation any time soon and certainly not before the August Municipal Elections. But don’t hold your breath that the status quo will suddenly be reversed when the DA take over the council after the elections for the reality is nothing will change for months if not years to come. Many say the animals should be impounded but consider the reaction of confiscating the animals. We could see a riot not dissimilar to what we have witnessed in Tshwane over the past weeks for it is doubtful these herders will take having their animals impounded lying down.

But there is a far more serious threat that cannot be ignored. A lot of pedestrians, kids and adults walk this road and certainly some of the older folk are sometimes a little worse for wear after a jug or two of refined grape juice. Hitting an animal will cause damage to your car and hopefully leave you uninjured.  Kill a pedestrian and the consequences could be a lot more dire with a jail sentence for murder or culpable homicide not be improbable.

So what is the answer?

Possibly we have to accept that we reside in a semi-rural environment and though we may in many ways enjoy a first world lifestyle, we have to accept we live in a third world environment.  These animals are a reality of rural South Africa and won’t disappear just because it is illegal and we have to accept we can’t change things. In the words of Reinhold Niebuhr, American theologianGod grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference”. 

First off the speed limit over this stretch needs to be reduced for everyone’s safety and the council should be asked to approach Provincial Roads to extend the 60KPH speed zone and move the 60K sign 500 metres south from its present position. Ideally speed humps should be installed but apparently these cannot be placed on National /  Provincial roads so relly it is up to drivers to take care and reduce their speed. Extending the 60PPH limit possibly won’t stop speeding for we all know that South African drivers are renowned for generally ignoring speed limits with few exceptions. But maybe, just for once, we should all be cognisant of the dangers and more importantly, the consequences and drive a little slower through the “farm zone”.

Another section of road waiting for a serious accident is on Tarragona Road. It seems the 50KPH doesn’t apply to some of the big trucks that ply this route and there is a particularly noisy Audi that treats Tarragona as his very own Hot Rod strip.

But on a serious note it is just sensible to reduce speed over this section of road. Sure the journey will add a minute to travel time but that is a lot less time than a day or two defending a culpable homicide charge or getting quotes to have a damaged front end repaired. Such is human nature that if we get caught speeding we chastise the traffic department of being sneaky to earn money but if we hear of someone being knocked over because of excessive speeding we chastise them for not doing enough to stop speeding.

In closing, a short note to the lady who, ferrying a group of kids from St Francis College, decided to do a three-point turn on the R330 near the Kromme bridge in the face of oncoming traffic including a big truck. Please be more careful in future you put the lives of those kids, your own and the drivers of the other vehicles at risk. It seems you were closer to a major accident than you realise so next time think about the consequences and rather travel to the next intersection rather than attempt to make a U-turn in the middle of a busy road.

Proud moment for Talhado Children’s Haven Graduate

Talhado Children’s Haven graduate celebrates

Matric Dance fever came to Sea Vista last evening along with another proud moment for the teachers and staff at Talhado Children’s Haven as one of their old boys, Charl Brown, prepared to attend his Matric farewell dance on 22 June.

Charl who is set to matriculate from Humansdorp Secondary School this year, is the second son of proud parents Virginia and Charlie Brown of Sea Vista.Charl’s mother, Virginia, is the Haven’s Grade 00 Afrikaans Montessori teacher.

Friends and family gathered together to celebrate and give Charl a fabulous send-off before his father took him to collect his date for the evening, Cindy Leigh Saile.

Congratulations to Charl – everyone is very proud of you! And Congratulations to the Haven and its wonderful staff who can now boast
another matriculant amongst its old boys!

Charl Brown

Charl Brown (centre) with his proud father and mother, Charlie
and Virginia Brown – Photo – Lyn Aitken

Article – Lynette Aitken

College visit Citrus Farm & Braai with Dad

Curiosity Bites At Citrus Farm

Ever wondered how your fruit gets to the shelf at Spar? Ask any St Francis College Grade 0 pupil and they’ll tell you. The class travelled to Patensie this month to visit Paksaam Nursery and Citrus Farm, where they learned about how delicious oranges, naartjies and lemons are grown and processed. Following a tour and tractor ride around the orchards, delighted pupils made a pit stop at Tolbos Country Shop and Restaurant for a little down-time and chat about everything they’d learned. Teachers Elizabeth Carpenter and Karen Parker were pleased as punch with their pupils’ fruity knowledge (and good behaviour).

Nou Gaan Ons Braai! We Love Our Dads!

Young St Francis College pupils celebrated Father’s Day this month by treating their dads to a Braai Picnic at school.

Armed with braai tongs and refreshments, the dads arrived to fanfare, with hugs and back slaps all round.

After some fun games and a braai, everyone relaxed on the grass with a picnic, where dads were handed delightful handmade gifts.

Happy Father’s Day (and month), fabulous fathers of St Francis Bay!

Grade-0 Outing to Citrus Farms

Up, down and all around – Photo – Zoe Henn

Grade-0 Outing Tolbos Pit Stop

Grade 0 pupils enjoying an orange in the citrus orchards of Paksaam Nursery and having a quick pit stop at Tolbos. – Photo Zoe Henn

Justin Ackerman, with his children, Morgan and Ben

Justin Ackerman, with his children, Morgan and Ben, enjoying their “braaivleis” and picnic – Photo Lyn Webb

Mike Heim, with his children, Paige and Kyle

Mike Heim, with his children, Paige and Kyle, enjoying their “braaivleis” and picnic – Photo Lyn Webb

Articles by Roxanne Litherland and Beth Cooper Howell