Friday, March 23, 2007

Some more Photos of Our Sir Lowry's Village Outreach

The pictures do not really cover the full scale of the event. 160 children attended the children's programme. 70 families received food parcels. 100 of our students arrived on busses and began to permeate the township. There was no parking in the street as vehicles of supporters from local churches began to arrive. I wish I could share more pictures, but it would fill several pages.

I've never seen Zandisile so Jovial :-) He is one of our Resident Assitants.


Samantha, had about 15 pictures taken with different children from the community. We really got to see her motherly instincts.

Nkosinathi and Baqcine taking a breather after an active children's programme.

These are children from the Sir Lowrys Village waiting for the programme to start.

Some of the community members who received food parcels.

The children's programme in its early stages.

Emily Steward is the leader in the local Sir Lowrys' Village community who gave us a lot of support in organising the programme. She is an exceptional person.

Peter Webster was in charge of the small groups of students who walked through the township, knocked on doors, and handed out copies of "Signs of the Times" .

About 60 students from Helderberg, and other participants lined up with big boxes filled with food. Each student got to hand a box with food to a community member.
A Great BIG thank-you to everybody who made the event a success!

District Mail: Heartbeat of the Helderberg

I got such a big surprise when I opened the local newspaper today to find that they had covered an event that I regard as one of the highlights of our year. Two Saturdays ago, we took two bus-loads of students down to Sir Lowries Pass Village to do a community outreach. It was very successful.

On Monday morning I wrote a report which I sent to several newspapers by e-mail. I knew that the deadline to get articles into the newspaper was 12:30. I sent the report early in the morning. By the afternoon I was getting worried because I had not received any response from the newspapers. I suddenly realised that I had not received any e-mails on that day! Our Internet service provider had routing problems and none of my e-mails had gone out on time.

I was angry with myself for not sending the report on Sunday. And there were no surprises in last week's newspaper. I bought the newspaper this week and, began paging through it. And then suddenly I got a big surprise. A full page dedidacted to our outreach.

Click on the pictures to read the full report. I took 135 pictures on that day. I will try to post a few more on the blog.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Random Thoughts on Work

I currently have the privilege of having two high school learners at my disposal to do about five hours of work every week. They "offered" their services to me when they broke one of the more important rules at the College and ended up facing an austere disciplinary panel.

I have this privilege for another two weeks, but I find myself debating what I should let them do. Last week I asked the one girl to rake some grass on the children's playground that we are developing. She came back without the rake and I have not seen it since then.

I recently discovered an interesting news article via the Progressive Adventism Blog in which it is reported that an Adventist school is facing legal challenges to its student work programme. It would seem that the school expects (expected?) students to participate in work programmes for which they were not skilled and without taking the necessary safety precautions.

I guess I would be looking for trouble if I asked these students to get onto a scaffolding without proper instruction on using safety gear and equipment and ask them to clean gutters.

I find myself in a bit of a quandry. I am not sure what I should let the learners do. I don't want them to do meaningless work, like digging a hole and covering it again. (I will probably lose my spade.) I should probably take some time and teach them how to install trunking for the network in the dormitory and how to crimp cables. That would be a good learning experience for them, but I am afraid that I cannot really afford to work through that learning curve with them. (Perhaps I should).

Perhaps my readers have some good ideas about work programmes for students to engage in.

On another level: it is important to have a work ethic and it is one of the values that we try to instill in our students.

I wonder how students would respond to a request to donate about 10 - 15 hours of their time per semester to help us man a front desk at the dormitory. These students will control who enters and exits the dormitory (visitors sign in and out). They will also provide change for the washing machines and sell phone cards.

HEHE... I guess this is wishful thinking and wild dreams.

But just imagine...