Perhaps you have heard the well-known proverb: If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together. This is the inspiration behind a meeting held in the Sea Vista Community Hall on Thursday evening, 27 July. There were approximately 50 people present and it was a chance for everyone who is involved in projects in Sea Vista to provide a brief outline of the work they do, where and when they meet and what support they need. This gave people the opportunity to consider how they can work together, support each other to collectively uplift and build a happier united community across St Francis.
It was inspiring to hear how many projects are currently happening as well as to listen to those who have dreams for new projects.
This is an outline of some of the projects that are currently working in Sea Vista and some of their needs:
Soccer: There are a number of soccer clubs in the community. Financial support is needed to fund those who have been invited to play overseas. This is an urgent need as three boys have been selected to play in England. There is also a need to help with safe transport to various matches locally. Ideally a transport vehicle is needed. Soccer gear and boots and balls are always needed. The young people involved in soccer are available to give back to the community and to participate in environmental clean ups.
St Francis Animal Rescue: There is a team involved in education about pet care, neutering and spaying of animals, dipping the animals and providing food. Volunteers meet on Thursday afternoons at a field in Taragona Road. Volunteers also work hard to end they cycle of feral cat reproduction by trapping the cats, spaying them and returning them safely to the colonies where they provide feeding stations. Volunteers also visit the homes of cat owners in Sea Vista to educate them about caring for their cats. This organisation is supported by a strong team of fundraisers and vets from St Francis Bay and Humansdorp. There is always a need for food donation, funds and volunteers. You can find out more about this project at: https://stfrancisanimalrescue.org
Talhado Children’s Haven: This is a Montessori preschool which has been running in Sea Vista since 2017 and the haven has been running since 1998. They have trained Montessori teachers and the success of the project can be seen in how many of these children have gone on to primary school where they are successful in their learning. There are a group of knitters and crochet people who provide a beautiful handmade blanket for each child at the school. More blankets are always needed. Funding is always needed, and you can visit the Talhado Children’s Haven Website for more details about the haven and how to sponsor or donate: talhadochildrenshaven.org.
After-Care Centre: There is an after-care linked to Talhado Children’s Haven where computers are taught to older children. They are also wanting to start an Arts and Crafts Academy. They are particularly looking for volunteers who can help teach the children dance and ballet. Any contributions that volunteers feel they can make to this academy would be valued. Please contact Lesley Moore: 082 556 1050.
The Kromme Enviro Trust: This trust works in Sea Vista and other areas in the greater St Francis area to educate about the importance of protecting the indigenous plants in this area. Children from Sea Vista have attended eco-days. The importance of creating a litter-free environment is also taught to the children. You can find out more about this project at: https://stfranciskrommetrust.co.za
Sibanye Ladies Group: This group meets regularly with boys and girls from Sea Vista running activities to help them to attain their dreams and to avoid negative influences. These groups meet at 17:00 on Fridays and on Saturdays at 14:00 (a reading group for children between the ages of 7-12) and 15:00 ( arts and crafts). Please consider donating materials for arts and crafts, sewing and toiletries. A sewing table, sewing machines and a stove are needed. If you would like to speak to the boys and girls about careers, inspirational topics and motivation, there is a real need for this as well. There is also a need for a safe storage space for equipment. You can also donate sanitary products for the girls at the Spar. Sibanye have a Facebook page where you can find out more information about the work they do. You can also donate on the Rotary website- the banking details are there and mark your donation clearly for Sibanye: https://rotarystfrancisbay.org.
Soup Kitchens: There are a number of soup kitchens that operate in Sea Vista supplying a nutritious meal to the children, elderly and vulnerable. Should you want to donate foodstuffs to these soup kitchens, there is always a need. Gas and pots are also needed.
Disaster Volunteer group: This group works to provide support for those who lose their belongings in fires . They help with medical support, food relief, beds and bedding supplies, household goods and food parcels. Please consider volunteering for this group. You can find out more at: dvgstfrancis.co.za and at the Facebook page.
Music group: There is a group that is working with children, teaching them how to play drums, guitar and piano. This music group happens twice a week and caters for children aged 7-14.
They especially need donations of musical instruments and are also looking for a safe storage place for the instruments. If you can help with instruments and/ or teaching, please let us know. Or there is a teacher available, we just need funding to pay her.
Marimba Beats music group
This group has made videos of their music for TikTok and need help in promoting their music. They are available to play at events and would love to have a camera, laptop and printer if possible and help with their entrepreneurial venture.
Care for the frail, elderly and vulnerable
A group of people from the Sea Vista Community commit financially and volunteer to care for the frail, elderly and vulnerable. They need so much support, such as transport to hospitals, food, entertainment for the elderly, helping to wash and care for them, food (soup and porridge). If you have a heart for people like this, please consider volunteering your time and resources.
Heartstrings – there are three elements to this project.
An Early Childhood Development programme, working with current ECD centres in their work and resources. One of these is MJA which is near U Save in Sea Vista. They are working in conjunction with BookDash which is a project that aims to give every child ownership of 100 books. You can read more about how they want to develop under ‘Projects in the Future’.
Sea Vista Eye Clinic: With support from Mike Wyllie, WBHO and Bruce Brooker’s construction company an extension to the clinic in Sea Vista was built in which optometrists Antony Yoell and Margaretha from Blink Optometrist volunteer to run a clinic to help the community in Sea Vista. Specsavers have donated equipment and frames and Rotary have made a donation to help obtain optical equipment.
There are quite a few literacy projects happening in Sea Vista. A team visit Sea Vista Primary School three times a week and work there with small groups of children from Grades 2-5 helping them with their literacy. Volunteers are needed to help work with the mothers of these children so that they can support their children’s reading at home. If you think you can help with adult literacy – there is a need for that as well.
Global Story bridges. Every Monday afternoon in the Sea Vista Library children aged 10- 14 learn to make movies using iMovie. They share their movies about their lives with children from across the globe. You can read more about this project at: https://globalstorybridges.com. Volunteers are needed to help supervise the children as they make their movies and edit them.
Workshops. People have organised workshops in Sea Vista.
Some of these are:
Art of Living: Two courses have been run in Sea Vista, one called Ikasi and one called Breath Water Sound. These courses cover life skills that help people cope with stress.
Kairos: Reframing your future. This workshop took place and you can read more about it at https://www.kairosconnect.net/
Alternatives to Violence (AVP):
A two-day workshop was held in April this year with teenagers. The workshop consisted of tasks that helped the teenagers to reflect and focus on focus of AVP how violence is often normalised and unconsciously internalised in their lives. They focused on looking for ways to resolve conflicts without resorting to violence. We would like to run more of these workshops and to train facilitators from the Sea Vista Community to run these workshops. To do this we need funding. Please volunteer if you would like to be trained as a facilitator.
Safehouse at the police station
There is a small prefab room at the police station which has been made comfortable for women and children to stay in as an emergency safe place for women and children.
There is a need to build on trauma counselling in the future as well.
Projects in the future:
These are projects that are in the beginning stages and are looking for support to get off the ground.
Farming God’s Way This project has ground behind the Disney Creche in Sea Vista. They want to start a garden in which they train young people in skills such as farming sustainably and management techniques. They need equipment such as gardening equipment such as hoes, forks, wheelbarrows, drip irrigation and measuring rope. You can find out more about Farming God’s Way at: https://www.farming-gods-way.org. This is part of the Heartstrings project.
Three stream Trade High School
There is a vision to establish a three-stream high school based on the Jakes Gerwel, Bonnievale Trade School model. This is part of the Heartstrings project.
Other dreams for the Heartstring project include:
- A pregnancy help centre.
- A market where goods made by people in the community as well as vegetables can be sold.
The aim is to start an academy to introduce golf to the children of Sea Vista. The hope is to help them develop skills so that they can work in a variety of careers related to the golfing industry, including cooking and working in catering.
Aluminium work and workshop
A community member from Sea Vista dreams of teaching young people to work with aluminium – to make and install aluminium windows. He needs equipment, materials, and a workshop space.
Career path choices, interview skills, creating CVs business sills, branding, marketing, using social media platforms. Help is needed in putting a programme like this together.
Thembinkosi Dywili, who has the nursery on Tarragona Way needs help with his shelter and he would also like assistance in planting trees in Sea Vista.
There is another garden project run by one of the residents of Sea Vista which aims to teach young people about how to use land well to feed the community. He has planted a variety of vegetables and needs a hosepipe, fertiliser, garden implements and assistance with controlling the pests.
It is encouraging to see so many projects up and running, and inspiration for many more. There was strong representation by Rotary St Francis Bay who have a long history of helping in Sea Vista and the greater St Francis area. Support is needed in so many areas. Can you help in teaching woodwork/ carpentry, fishing, computer skills (there are computers in the library) modelling, help with homework. homework help, pre-natal classes or moms-and-tots classes? Are you available to teach sport (cricket, tennis, netball, bodyboarding)? If you want to be involved in any of the projects mentioned here or have any other ideas to help build the community, please contact either: Stella Plantinga (071) 144 6175 or Toni Gennrich (082) 885 7036 and we will put you in touch with the project leaders or find ways to help you get started.