Life Director Sally Versfeld and a supporter of Life, Ingrid Joubert, with their 'My School' cards issued by Life.
GEORGE NEWS - Life Community Services launched its first two grade 1 classes in January this year, adding yet another branch to its already extensive list of programmes and services rendered to children in disadvantaged communities in George over the past 17 years.
At a thank-you breakfast for sponsors and collaborators on Friday, CEO Maryna de Vries said it has been their vision for some time to create continuity in the education of the children from Life's early childhood development (ECD) learning centres through to school level. This is now possible through the Life Christian Academy, a private school in Parkdene, that will be adding an extra grade every year.
De Vries also introduced Life's new branding and logo designed by Andrew Young from Branding Strategy. A colourful, professional brochure tells at a glance what Life is all about and will be used for marketing and fundraising, which is also done overseas.
At Life, children receive Bible teaching, life skills training, homework classes and a hearty meal at the community centres in eight different communities. About 4 000 children are served per week. It has established a training centre where youth-focused training programmes, sport, discipleship and mentoring are offered as well as a music academy where children receive dance and music lessons. "We are striving to give our children a truly solid foundation," said De Vries.
Staff members are also trained and developed at the training centre and through Isipho, an employment programme, full-time staff are taught sewing, crocheting and handwork that is sold at the Outeniqua Family Market as well as through churches, businesses and online.
Life's main centre, just off Nelson Mandela Boulevard in Parkdene, is leased from the George Municipality, but it has been the organisation's dream for many years to own the property. This dream might be getting closer to reality thanks to two local paddlers who will be participating in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge in 2018.
Des Kiely from Chas Everitt George announced at the breakfast that he and his partner, Glen Lindsay, have chosen Life as their charity for this race over 5 000km from La Gomera in the Canary Islands to Nelson's Dockyard, English Harbour in Antigua. They will be creating international awareness of Life during the race which is watched by some 90 million people.
Support and sponsorship
The South African loyalty card, the 'My School' card, was also introduced. If Life issues a card to a person, they earn money every time they swipe the card at participating businesses. It can be obtained from their offices at 122 Cradock Street (opposite Outeniqua Primary).
Another way that the public's support is welcomed is through Life's Sponsor a Child project through which a person sponsors a child's school uniforms and stationery, among others, and attend his/her sport or school events.
Life's annual fundraiser, the Gatsby gala morning, will be held on 19 August at the Wilderness Hotel. Sponsors of tables and women who would like to host a table at the event may phone Life on 044 873 6601.
Des Kiely (left) from Chas Everitt and Andrew Young from Branding Strategy with the new logo in the background.
Life Director Sally Versfeld (left) and CEO Maryna de Vries at the breakfast.
ARTICLE & PHOTOS: ALIDA DE BEER, GEORGE HERALD JOURNALIST
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