St Francis College has got Talent

by Roxanne Litherland and Beth Cooper Howell

Let’s get creative, said three passionate creatives to a group of intrepid kids. And so, they did.

St Francis College music teacher Natasha Brown, art teacher Louise Ackerman and local photographer Sacha Park were determined to showcase the diverse talents of pupils at the school by organising a talent show.

Following auditions in October, pupils wowed their audience this month in various disciplines: art, photography, singing, instrumental, drama and dance.

Judge and local performer Luan Cloete congratulated participants and said: “I am very impressed with the great improvement of talent and the expression of everyone’s creativity in this year’s talent show. They’ve done really well, worked so hard and have outstanding talent.”


Drama King Queen St Francis College

Winners of the Drama category: Drama King- Alexander Moolman and Drama Queen- Lexera Castle

Talent show winners at St Francis College

Cuteness was the Grade 00 Class performing their song and dance “Boogie Bugs”

Talent Show Boogie Bugs at St Francis College

Judge Luan Cloete congratulating the winners of the Junior Division.

Photographs: Roxanne Litherland and Caroline Anderson



Photographs: Roxanne Litherland and Caroline Anderson

College Kids excel at Horse Riding

by Roxanne Litherland and Beth Cooper Howell

FIVE St. Francis College pupils have displayed their equestrian talent with strength and style over this past year at the Homestead Equestrian Estate.

Emma Platt (Grade 2), Samara Howell (Grade 4), Amy Robson (Grade 4), Molly Dalton (Grade 5) and Tamarin Futeran-Blake (Grade 7) received several top results at shows held by the Estate.

The young horse riders have been praised for their commitment and skill in the arena.

Molly was awarded the Child Rider of the Year trophy for 2015 and tied for seventh place with Bella at the recent Homestead Awards ceremony. Samara was awarded 2014 Child Rider of the Year and placed fifth this year. Amy and Tamarin, who have only recently started riding, bravely took part in their first shows this year and did very well.

Several events are held and are a highlight on the horse riding estate’s calendar.

Horse-Riding-Pupils at St Francis College

Left to Right: Samara Howell (Grade 4), Molly Dalton (Grade 5), Amy Robson (Grade 4) and Emma Platt (Grade 2) showing their Rosettes and Child Horse Rider Trophy at school.

Photograph by Roxanne Litherland

Controlled fire burn Irma Booysen Reserve


Photo from FOSTER Communique

A controlled burn of the Irma Booysen Reserve is planned before the 30th November if conditions are suitable according to a communique sent out by FOSTER. Residents will be informed as soon as a decision is made and property owners / residents immediately adjacent to the burn area will be notified personally and are assured that the “Working on Fire” team (WOF)  is highly professional and will have everything in place to ensure that the burn is controlled and contained.

A meeting was held last year to discuss and answer questions and concerns and a summary of that meeting is outlined below.

Why is a controlled burn necessary:

Safety First:

Irma Booysen Reserve has not been burned for an extended period of time. If fynbos is not burned it will gradually be replaced by thicket species and large amounts of dry kindling will build up. For this reason the area was identified as a HIGH FIRE RISK area. When (not if) a fire starts, the dry kindling adds fuel to the fire and the fire not only burns hotter but becomes very difficult to manage and control. A controlled burn is therefore seen as a vital precautionary tool to prevent injuries and damage to people, property and wildlife. A controlled fire is a “cool” fire. The fire does not burn as hot as it would be during uncontrolled conditions.

And then Biodiversity:

Fire in Fynbos is far from a disaster, but rather a crucial trigger that resets the fynbos ‘successional clock’. It provides the stimulus for dormant seeds to germinate and the opportunity for many annuals, short-lived perennials and bulbs to grow, flower and seed during times of abundant nutrients and sunlight. They complete their short life cycles, returning to the soil as the larger shrubs overwhelm them, and remain dormant until the next fire. The optimal fire cycle for fynbos is between 10-14 years. It is not only the floral biodiversity that will benefit but the new growth after the fire will cause an increase the animal biodiversity as well.


Who will be in charge of the project?
The Working on Fire Management team will be in charge. The Kouga Municipality will provide logistical support in the form of water tankers and structural personal.

How many people will be deployed?
46 Fire Fighters from the Working on Fire teams will be deployed. A Samil 50 4x4 vehicle equipped with 1000 litre bakkie sakkie , a LDV 4x4 with 600 litre bakkie sakkie & all the required fire fighting equipment and tools needed for the operation will be deployed.

How will we know when they will start the burn?
We will be notified as early as possible before the planned commencement date. The actual date will be wind & weather dependant. They will only start burning if the fire weather forecast does not exceed 55 in the yellow. We will receive a notice 24 hours prior to actual burning.

Will there be fire breaks?
Our fire breaks have been widened, and will be sprayed with fire retardent before the actual commencement of the fire.
In the unlikely event of fire damage to property or the fire getting out of hand, who will be liable?
Working on Fire is fully insured against all damages.

If you have any queries or questions regarding the Burn Project, please send your questions to
We will refer them to the relevant experts.

You can also visit the FOSTER face book site for daily updates on this and other points of interest

Friendship Camp for College Kids


by Roxanne Litherland and Beth Cooper Howell

What’s the best thing about going to school on a working farm? You get to camp under the stars, close to nature – and wake up at dawn to the sounds of noisy roosters and mooing cows!

The annual Grade 1 – 3 Friendship Camp is a firm favourite among St. Francis College children, who look forward to their night away from home for most of the school year. Balmy weather made pitching tents a breeze and, after settling in and bidding goodbye to their parents, the excited group set off for a hike to Kromme River, where they enjoyed a picnic lunch.

Back at camp, children and teachers enjoyed dinner, braaied marshmallows and chatted around the camp fire before going on an after-dark hike to view the stars and listen to night sounds. The next morning was packing-up time, breakfast and off to school again.

“The Grade 1 class in particular was very impressed with the achievement of staying away from home for the night. They so wanted to enjoy another night under the stars!” said camp co-ordinator and Grade 1 teacher, Lyn Webb.

Friendship Camp for College Kids

Grade 1, 2 and 3 St. Francis College Pupils enjoying their braaied marshmellows while camping outside their classrooms.

Photograph by Caroline Anderson