It has been a while but here we are again to make contact with all our friends and supporters everywhere. It has been a busy two months with Eric getting used to the routine and demands of daily life at HNO, but he is adapting well and we continue to thank God for standing in the gap for us. The children at the centre are progressing and we have lately had some lovely little rewards for all the hard work. Today Wandile suddenly understood that putting one foot in front of the other is what walking is all about. His new boots helped in this area and we are grateful to the team from St Apolanaris who made that possible. Then there is Zotha sitting happily on her own as if she has done this all her life. It makes a big difference from always being supine to moving into a sitting position where you can see and interact so much better with those around you. In the meantime our very autistic little boy Thando who flutters around all over the place most of the day is starting to make eye contact. We had a lovely visit from Tam Bennet from ASA who came to speak to our staff and give us some guidelines on how to deal with the children who are on the autism spectrum.
We have seen some changes around the centre too. An old friend, who has supported projects often in the past, came to the fore again to sponsor our new tiles in the kitchen and we thank James Fernie of UTHANDO SA for sponsoring this long overdue upgrade. Big thanks to Brett Rich who did the tiling and also built our fabulous new ramp from the parking area up to the building, at a very reasonable price. I think our children have crept into his heart while he was working there and we are hoping to take advantage of his kindness again, when we can raise some funds for ceilings in the classrooms. Denis Weston and the “Knights” sent us another generous gift just in time to pay for the materials for the ramp and so between UTHANDO, the “Knights” and Brett our long overdue upgrades cost us nothing.
In May many of our local ladies, mostly farmers’ wives pulled their sleeves up and worked long shifts in the kitchen catering for the many riders of the famous Sani2C bicycle race that went through Mckenzie Country Club and raised a whopping R 38500 for HNO. Thank you to Dave and Lindsay Whirleybirch and Sandy van Rensberg for allowing us to be part of this fundraising event. Of course it goes without saying that we are grateful to the brain behind the race, Glen Haw (although it is probably more his wife Mandy…what do they say about behind every man?) But a very special thank you to all our hard working friends.
Our financial year ends in April and the figures showed a shortfall of R51 000. While I was still digesting this, and hadn’t even shared it with my management committee, out of the blue we received a call from a dear friend and long supporter who desires to remain unnamed, who had recently been blessed financially and wanted to share this with HNO. Receiving R 40 000 just out of the blue like that…well what can I say? We were quite stunned by this gesture and its incredible timing. How does one say thank you for this? Yet at the same time we know that our monthly supporters who faithfully keep us going, putting food on the table and lights shining and fuel in the tanks, are equally as special and kind and amazing. And so we are one big happy family…and a big thank you to all of you.
Vulnerable Family Feeding Scheme
To those of you who have continued to faithfully support this feeding scheme I just want to report that it is still “going like a boeing”. We are now up to 30 families a month. Some have been receiving sustenance from us for many years now and others have come and gone as needs have arisen. Today was one of the delivery days and it really is the most touching and rewarding thing to bring a box of food to a family or even a single person with no family and no income, who have nothing and have depended on begging from neighbours to keep alive. It was a lovely warm Winters day, no wind, no rain, no mud and just walking from home to home to meet in the sun with those who have so little, was a privilege and a joy.