Zandvlei Trust

This is a working relationship with the communtity of Village Heights,
the Zandvlei Trust, various other voluntary NPO's and the City of Cape Town.

The City of Cape Town adopted Village Heights for a legacy community pilot project, as part of
The World Design Capital 2014.

What and where is Village Heights Community Centre.

It is a registered NPO. Situated in the Lavender Hill area at the end of Military Road and close to the Rondevlei Nature Reserve.

It has a number of skills development and upliftment projects for the local community run by local community members. It works with many other organisations, local and international, and also individuals to help further its aim.

Projects are;

  • a Community Library with surfing for different age groups.

  • a Community vegetable garden and a Community Nature Garden

  • a Community Youth and Adult development programme

  • a Crochet and Knitting classes

  • a Feeding Programme

Who we are.

It is a voluntary organisation with a small membership. At our last AGM the following were elected to the governing body;

Position Name
Chairman Bernadine Thomas
Secretary Tanya Adams
Treasurer Gerrard Wigram
Exco Member Edward Thomas
Exco Member Sharon McCallum
Exco Member Maureen Julies
Exco Member Nathan Nelson


Some of the Organisations we have working partnerships with.

  • City of Cape Town (numerous depts)

  • Projects Abroad, Cape Town

  • Prospur Spar, Plumstead

  • The Christ Church, Constantia

  • Pollsmoor Prison Out Reach Programme

  • Zandvlei Trust

  • Vrygrond library

  • CTEET (Cape Town Environmental Education Trust)

Some things we need.

No. Item Description. Date.


The Admin Office needs a metal 4 drawer office filing cabinet. 2nd hand or new. 01/03/2015.

Contact Gavin Lawson.  or  021 705 5224.

The Village Heights Community Nature Garden.

Marijke Honig set up a Facebook page for the Community Nature Garden. Have a look at this
exciting project by the City of Cape Town and a number of other role players.

Click on the photo below for the link.

photograph by Marijke Honig.

At the the workshop in October 2014 in the Seawinds Community Centre ideas were drawn from
a number of people and organisations in the Lavender Hill area, so that the planning of the
Community Garden could begin.

This is the current plan for the area which came from the planning process above. The plan is
displayed in the library at Village Heights.

Loubie Rusch makes lekker tasting food / kos from indigenous plants that grow all around us.
She is working on the Nature Garden project too. She has identified local edible plants which grow
easily here.
A variety of species will be grown in a Seed Library Garden which will be planted in the Nature Garden.

photograph by Loubie Rusch.

Wild Asparagus (veldkool) delicious raw or cooked.

photograph by Loubie Rusch.

See Loubie's very interesting FB page here.

December 2015.

21/12/2015 - Today we went vegetable harvesting.      updated 11/01/2016.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

Today we picked about 12 large onions.....

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

....and a bunch of carrots too.

19/12/2015 - This was the last Marina Market before Christmas. It was drizzling today when
we pushed the trolley (our 4x4) to the Marina. 
                                   updated 11/01/2016.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

Our display today. We did sell a few more items. We were very pleased with the outcome
of the exercise and the sales this month.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

Veronica busy knitting another zebra.

17/12/2015 - The knitting group is working for the last Marina market before Christmas. There are more new items. Snowmen and Father Christmases.
Today a couple of naughty small children from Die Gat were playing with matches and set the Nature Garden area alight.

The snowmem lined up and waiting to be taken to the Market on Saturday.

See more..... 

This is what the Nature Garden area looked like before the fire.

The valuable sword grass bursting into flame and a resident rushing in with a bucket of water.

See more.....

11/12/2015 - The day after the party the children who come to the library and playpark were each
invited to come and receive a small Christmas present.                            
updated 11/01/2016.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

A group photo of the Projects Abroad team with the children and the helpers at VH.
Sharon supplied the tennis balls.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

There were balloons and tennis balls given to each child. And the soap bubbles were lots of fun.

10/12/2015 - The Christmas Party is provided by the Projects Abroad volunteers.

The first children to be served at the Christmas Party. 

See more..... 

10/12/2015 - A fire broke out in Die Gat and the residents managed to put it out fairly quickly

A fire was started in the reserve area opposite Die Gat. The residents managed to put
the fire out quite quickly.
Fortunately there was no wind blowing.

There are beans nearly ready for harvesting in the vegetable garden.

Tomatoes are nearly ready.

The onions are doing very well too.

The Christ Church, Constantia  - Uncle Rob dropped off a surprise today. Clothes and other items.
Here the local manequins are modelling them for display purposes.
Thank you very much to all the people who have donated clothing to VHCC for distribution to the coummunity this year.

There were games and puzzles for the children who attend the VHCC library too.

09/12/2015 - A visitor came and did some Christmas shopping today and took away a whole box of presents. updated 11/01/2016.                      

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

Sonja with the visitor and the items sold.

05/12/2015 - The Marina da Gama Market on Saturday.

photograph by Joan Wigram.

Renee at the table of hand made craft items for sale.

03/12/2015 - The Christ Church, Constantia regularly donates food hampers to VHCC for distribution to community members. These are some of the people who received a Christmas hamper, the others were not available when the photo was taken.
Projects Abroad volunteers made a very large pot of nutritious soup today. The many children who come to play in the park had some. It was planned to put some sausages in too, but when the cooks backs were turned for 2 seconds, the dog slipped into the room grabbed them off the table and wolfed them all down. She was fast asleep and well contented when I arrived.

Some of the happy recipients with their hampers.

The Christmas hampers come in a very useful plastic bucket.

Edward watching Renee sewing the head of the angel to the body.

See more....

November 2015.

30/11/2015 - Sharon and Brian came to visit today. It was Sharons birthday and she was requested to come and fetch a birthday card and present at VHCC.

photograph by Sharon McCallum.

The girls with Brian.

See the card ....

28/11/2015 - Today we went off to the Marina Market to see if we could sell some of our handmade crafts for the Christmas trees or for presents.

photograph by Joan Wigram.

Sonja and Renee setting the table up.

photograph by Joan Wigram.

Look at all the wonderful, creative and colourful things to buy for Christmas time.

27/11/2015 - The production line has been in full swing this week.

Look at all the Christmas things we have made to sell before the day!  Place your orders and 
we will make what you want.

See more.....

19/11/2015 - The knitting class was in full swing today. Christmas zebras are are on the production line this week. We also replanted the areas where the ground covers have been stolen from the tyre forest.

photograph by Bernadine Thomas.

Replanting at the tyre forest on 17/11/2015 in the rain.

See more....

The knitting and sewing class has moved into the creche building.

See more of what we did today....

This beetle came walking into the library this afternoon. It is a carrion eating
species not often seen in this area.

12/11/2015 - There was activity in the vegetable garden. Deens team were building and the
knitting class was busy making items for the next market.

The interns from the City of Cape Town ERM's Special Projects team with the help of the
Projects Abroad team were installing an irrigation system in the vegetable garden today.

See more....

Bernie issued pens sets and various items for school use to these boys who will be
writing exams tomorrow. They are new boys to the library from Village Heights..

These items were part of a large donated consignment collected and brought by the touring schoolboy Worthing Rugby Football Club from Sussex, England when they came to visit VHCC on 30/07/2015.
They knew of the requirement from the international Projects Abroad organisation.

See what they did...... 

Veronica and Sonja rolling off balls of wool for the next items they are going to make.
The table has the contents of new items they have made.

See more.....  

Renee signing out books to new children visiting from 2nd Avenue in Village Heights.
They have not had library cards issued to them yet.

07/11/2015 - The Knitting and Sewing Group were excited to attend their first outlet sales opportunity. They wanted to see if anything would be sold. They did very well and managed to sell over R400 worth of goods.
Well done to everyone involved.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Gerrard and Joan Wigram helping to man the table at the Marina da Gama craft market.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Veronica and Bernie working away at additional items for sale.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Renee filling up the toilet roll hanger for display purpose.


05/11/2015 - The Knitting and Sewing group is working overtime generating the items
which they hope to sell on Saturday 07/11/2015 at the market.

The production line is running like a well oiled machine.

See more...... 

The gardens are blooming.

See more...... 

It was Guy Fawkes Day today and these boys were having some fun taking the "guy" out of Mr Fawkes.

See more...... 

October 2015.

29/10/2015 - There are a number of Projects Abroad volunteers at VHCC helping to level off the floors and build the walls. They had planned to make lunch today.
The knitting classes are a production activity as there is a goal to work towards. Next Saturday they plan to have a table at a fair in Marina da Gama and sell some of the Christmas decorations and other things they have been making.

The Projects Abroad volunteers decided to make lunch for the children today. The adults
did get some too.

See more.....

The Village Heights knitting class is helping Santa Klaus make presents for Christmas.

See more.....

22/10/2015 - There are a number of vounteers from Projects Abroad at VHCC currently, so Deen
is moving ahead with the floors and having them leveled off so the rain water goes into the rainwater
dainage system.

Volunteers from Projects Abroad working on the steps leading down to the play park.

The courtyard floor is being sloped towards the drain pick up point.

This is what we were making today in the knitting class with Joan.

See more....

The library had 2 more shelves moved in against the back wall during the week.

15/10/2015 - There was taxi violence in the Vrygrond and Seawinds area for the past few days and this caused a lot of disruption to many hundreds of peoples lives and daily activities in the area.
School children could not go to school and many employed people could not get to work as roads were closed and no taxis were operating.

Pastal colours were selected for these hanger covers.

Bright contrasting colours were selected for these hanger covers.

Horizontal stripes in the Rasta colours.

08/10/2015 - The knitting class and sewing class continued day with a visiting teacher from New Zealand.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Joan and Penny discussing the pattern to make.

See what we did.... 

Feeding the children. Prospur Kwikspar, Plumstead donate bread rolls every week
to the VHCC for distribution to the VH Community. They have done so for many years.

Here Bernie is seen handing out bread rolls to the children in the playpark.

The Pollsmoor Outreach Programme donates porridge in dry form to VHCC for
distribution to the  community. Bernie decided to involve the younger children during
the school holidays by having them water the tyre forest with buckets of water.
She would cook and serve them porridge in return. 

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

The children taking turns to fill the buckets from the hosepipe. They had to give each
tree 5 buckets of water.

See more..... 

01/10/2015 - The knitting classes started today with Joan Wigram as the teacher. There were
3 students today. Next week there will be more.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Joan discussing what they will be making with these test squares. There were lots of exciting things discussed and the knitting may be incorporated into a collage with fabrics for cushion covers.

See more.... 

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

There were knitting classes taking place in other places too.

See more....  

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Ashwin and Edward planting seeds in a box today.


September 2015.

30/09/2015 - Today there was a large group visit from Village Heights to 3 vegetable gardens in Gugulethu and to the Centre where the distribution of the weekly fresh produce boxes are packed for transporting to various outlets for the fresh produce. 
This was arranged by Abalimi Bezekhaya, CTEET and the Citys ERM interns for Special Projects.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Rob Small from Harvest of Hope Abalimi addressing the group visiting one of the gardens in Gugulethu.
The group visited 3 gardens and the Business Place in Philippi.

See more....

10/09/2015 - Today it was raining with a constant drizzle. Edward had just finished planting the seedlings donated by Abalimi Bezekhaya visitors Lizwe and Bridget.

Inspecting the new vegetable beds.

See more.... 

03/09/2015 - Today was Arbour Day at Village Heights. Also on the go later was a lunch at VHCC
for the group from the City of Munich visiting the City of Cape Town on business.

The tyre forest being planted on Arbour Day by the residents of Village Heights. 
This is part of the future Nature Garden.

See more....

Loubie Rusch preparing and demonstrating how to cook indigenous vegetable meals. 
Those who tasted it said it was "Baie lekker and we want to know more please". 

See more.... 

Some of the invited visiting guests at the sit down lunch at VHCC.

See more.... 

Two little spring flower maidens.

August 2015.

27/08/2015 - There has been lots of preparing for the Arbour Day next week at Village Heights.
The Garden Competion has nearly 30 entries so far. Prizes will be awarded to the best gardens of various sizes and types.

Edward pointing and saying "Look the door is on the library office, we finally did it."

Gwen or Aunty Gwen as she is known has achieved the reward for the dedicated work
she put in over 4 months attending classes at the Village Care Centre in Lavender Hill.
She renewed aquaintences with a school teacher (from long ago) who runs these training classes.

And to follow she also received this certificate from follow on training.
Well done Gwen, everyone is proud of you for showing the way it is done.

The girls doing a homework project in the library after school.

Bernie and Tanya with a couple of the books in the library donated by Biblionef SA.

20/08/2015 - There have been planning meetings for the Arbour Day planting. Discussions for the funding proposal and more this past week.

Removing the covering strips for the doorway. Bernie giving her input.

Edward and Geniel discussing the best way to modify the doorway.

The remaining tyres have arrived for the "tyre forest" in the Nature Garden.

13/08/2015 - At the Village Heights Stakeholders meeting today at the Rondevlei Nature Reserve,
we had 3 presentations and feedback from 3 other activities which took place during the last year.

Stephen Granger Chairman of the Village Heights Stakeholders meeting introducing the agenda.

See who was there....

11/08/2015 - Today we held our AGM in the library at 15h00.

Waiting for all to be seated and checking the agenda.

Nearly ready to start. Some light hearted banter amoungst the participants.

Some new members were elected to the Exco at the meeting with the core members being reappointed. New plans and direction were briefly outlined by the Chairman Bernadine Thomas. Follow up planning meetings will take place next week. The Gift of Hope doors closed at the end of July after 5 years. New doors will be opening through the new vision for VHCC. The next VHCC Stakeholders meeting will take place at Rondevlei Nature Reserve on 13/08/2015 at 09h00.
The Meeting closed at 16h15.

The minutes will follow and be available here.

06/08/2015 - Today it was sunny and very warm in the afternoon, a contrast to last Thursdays weather.

This is the sign made by the Worthing Rugby Football Club members who transformed the vegetable garden last week.

This vibrant hand print was made on the library wall by one of the children at VHCC a few years ago.
It has been hidden behind book shelves for a long time.

Tanya and Bernie cleaning up and moving shelves and books in the new look library.

The office was used to store the books while shelves were 
made fitted and moved about in the library.

Meanwhile the wall glass bricks are going in by the Projects Abroad Team.

July 2015.

30/07/2015 - Today was a different day at VHCC. The touring schoolboy Worthing Rugby Football Club  from Sussex, England came to visit.

The centre spread of their official programme.

See more.....     updated 31/07/2015.

23/07/2015 - The Villa of Village Heights. Projects Abroad volunteer Stephen Bouma made
this cardboard model of VHCC while he was here. He is an architectural student from the Netherlands.

The Projects Abroad team were busy today.

See more.

What are these elephants doing in the library?

See more.

A small flock of 15 Common Waxbills visiting the vegetable garden.

18/07/2015 - B.E.N. (Bicycle Empowerment Network) donated 20 bicycles to individuals and
organisations requiring a bicycle as their  67 minutes for the Mandela Day celebrations.
Ivan Meyer, Provincial Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport officiated at the handing over ceremony.

Sonja Pithey the CEO with Megan Pringle the Fundraiser introducing Nathan to the audience and
what he needs a bicycle for.

See more about this Mandela Day celebration.

17/07/2015 - Village Heights at Zerilda Primary School with a number of organisations
celebrating Mandela Day by making a flower garden preparing a vegetable garden and feeding
and teaching a number of school children and adults about Environmental Education.

The Projects Abroad team digging the new vegetable bed. They removed grass, rubble and
buried plastic junk from the area. The ground was compacted and it was more difficult than it looked.

See more of what we did.

16/07/2015 - Dancing classes continue.

Everybody getting into step.

See more.

15/07/2015 - Nathan took his Eco Buddies from Village Heights and went to the False Bay Environmental Education Centre today. They learned about animals, reptiles and many other things in the Nature Reserve.

photograph by Nathan Nelson.

The Eco Buddies who were visiting the FBNR EEC today, seen at the Zeekoevlei eastern shore.

09/07/2015 - There was plenty of activity with children in the playpark and the library for knitting classes

Lil van Ryneveld at the last class she gave at VHCC on 02/07/2015. All at VHCC will remember you.

See how the knitting and crochet class continues.


The tyre forest is happening at last. 


This teddy was having a rest from all the fun and playing today.

See more.

02/07/2015 - School holidays, plenty on the go at VHCC this winter holiday.

Nathan with some Eco Buddies he has just brought back from the CTEET school holiday program
for today at Zeekoevlei. They were sponsored by Zandvlei Trust.
This week he has taken 6 different students each day to CTEET for a different program.

See some of the things the Eco Buddies made.


Carmen, Lil and Bernie busy working on the patterns.

See more from the class today.


Projects Abroad volunteers Caroline and Jess adding finsihing touches to the cooking area they
are building.

Rubbish dumped in the street because a dissatisfied person did not agree with the new contract
for the local cleansing system.

Some of the younger guys joined in the dancing today.

See more. 

June 2015.

25/06/2015 - When I arrived there was a practise session on the go, learning the moves which 
the Projects Abroad volunteer from France taught them last week.

The dancing practice today. 

Lil van Ryneveld's Crochet and Knitting Class.

Eco Buddies next week at CTEET. 

Seen in the Play Park.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

VHCC was paid a visit by the Citys Health Inspector Zezile Mqhayi and Mrs Beula from the Retreat Day Hospital on 24/06/2015. Edward is receiving the bags.

Tanya holding up the water bag delivered by the City's Dept of Health.
The bag can be hung up in the sun to warm the water too.

18/06/2015 - Lil van Ryneveld's Crochet and Knitting Class continued today.

Carmen, Bernie, Jody, Koekie and Lil busy as bees.

See more....


The childrens art class bibs were washed and made a colourful washline.

See some more things hanging around VHCC today.

11/06/2015 - Look what Nathan was doing on the 07/06/2015 the Peninsula Paddle 2015.

See the story of the Peninsula Paddle. 

Nathan on the right with the Manager of Zandvlei Nature Reserve, Joshua Gericke (in the middle)
and staff member Neville Williams (on the left). They are approaching Retreat Road in the
Sand River canal. This is very close to St Mary's Primary School in Retreat Road.

Nathan on the Black River near the Rondebosch Golf Course near Sybrand Park.

Nathan with a young student on the City of Cape Town Sports and Recreation Departmentt,
Youth Development Team who participated in the 2015 Peninsula Paddle.

Well done Nathan.

May 2015.

28/05/2015 - Look who came to visit the front garden at VHCC a few weeks ago. Bernie said "We woke
up one morning and there it was".

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

The Dwarf Cape Chameleon in the front garden ...and another one today, trying to keep warm in the sun.

The shrubs in the vegetable garden are about to flower.   The Iceberg Rose is flowering.

Aloe.                                                              Osteospermum hybrid?


Just some of the flowers in the front and side gardens flowering at the moment. Well done Edward!

Lil van Ryneveld and Tanya discussing her jersey in progress.

See more from the Crochet and Knitting class today.

While waiting for Nathan to arrive I spent about 15 minutes overlooking the wetland area and beyond into the Rondevlei Nature Reserve to see what was to be seen.
A Grey Mongoose made its way along the pathways towards the wetland from the Reserve side. A domestic cats was seen leaving the wetland area.
2 species of frog were calling intermitently - Clicking Stream and Cape Sand Frogs.
Laughing Dove, Brown throated Martin, African Black Swift, White-necked Raven, Cape Wagtail, House Sparrow, Common Waxbill flock feeding in the grasses of the wetland, Karoo Prinia, Yellow billed Kite, Common Starling, Cape White-eye and Levaillant's Cisticola.
So if one spent some time observing the wetland area here much more will be seen. 

21/05/2015 - Lil's Crochet and Knitting class continued today. The last module of the Abalimi Workshop
was held yesterday.
The Business and Sewing Skills  Workshop which a number of VH members attended is coming to an end soon. This was co-ordinated by Jess Kavonic.

Lil explaining the next step of the pattern to Tanya with Carmen listening too.

Mabel reading the instruction for her pattern.

Gwen adding the trim to her shawl.

Carmen with her jersey she is knitting.

Tanya progressing with her jersey.

Koekie showing off her "designer crochet bag".

These were some of the notes from the Abalimi Workshop from yesterday.
Hopefully all the participants will receive their certificates nexts week to say
they have completed the course.

The next challenge is get motivated and grow the vegetables required for their
home use and possibly for profit to make their new learned skills it into a sustainable


14/05/2015 - Nathan graduated this week and is now the appointed  Community Liason Officer for CTEET in the broader Village Heights area. He has completed a 10 month training programme with another 2 months to go with practical training. Congratulations and well done Nathan.

The frogs have been visiting. The other night there was a Clicking Stream Frog in the lounge. Also a large Leopard Toad was removed from inside the house a week ago. The Clicking Stream frogs are still calling from the wetland in the middle of the day. Seen flying near the western bounday of the fence this afternoon were a Pied Crow being chased by a Peregrine Falcon. They were flying loops and circles with the Peregrine calling loudly.

This "teddy" had been washed and was drying in the little bit of warm sun
which was available today outside the library door.

Inside the library these girls were reading books. They are regular visitors to the library.

The story about the kitty.

Quietly sitting in the corner reading on the floor.

This is not a posed photograph.
Bernie called me to come and look. She is waiting for her sisters to
hurry up and go home, she has her books already and they take so long.
So she is reading out loud to herself in the courtyard. Bernie says she
often finishes a book and then comes in to swop it for another one.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Look who came to visit us inside. Beeeg Mamma a Western Leopard Toad. "She came into the
lounge to watch TV with us" they joked.
Edward put her in the vegetable garden. Photo was taken on 14/01/2015.

07/05/2015 - The VHCC together with Projects Abroad decided to assist the Zerilda Park Primary School after a visit to the school by Bernie earlier this year.
A number of children from the community attend Zerilda Park Primary School. Discussuions took place with the Principal Mrs Engeldoe to upgrade the playground and equipment with the voluntary help and donations of materials.
There is still plenty more to do as there are many more ideas to be implemented.
Deen's bakkie (one in the photos) was stolen in Main Road, Tokai with all the working equipment.
This has slowed the project implementation down a bit.

photograph by Bernie Thomas.

Zerilda Primary School Principal Mrs Engeldoe in the centre dressed in black. All the volunteers from Projects Abroad and VHCC are not in this photo.

See what we have achieved .....   new 20/05/2015.

07/05/2015 - The VHCC library has had a makeover. Edward and Ashton have repainted the inside.
And Bernie and Tanya have changed the layout with certain shelves for adults and then a range of
childrens age group books.
Also the different language groups have been moved onto separate shelves.

Nathan and Ismail are on their graduation camp in the Cedarberg this weekend, which is part of their CTEET training course.

The new colour scheme for the library. Smart hey!

See more....


April 2015.

30/04/2015 - There is wall painting going on at VHCC this last week into between everything else that happens.

Matilda Zigante Projects Abroad and her friend painting the detail to the new wall decoration.

See more... 

23/04/2015 - The Crochet and Knitting classes continue to produce good work. They are being held on Tuesdays while some of the participants attend a skills develoment workshop.

Edward and Ashton are working with Deen and his Projects Abroad team at Zerilda Primary School rebuilding the playground for the children. This is a community colaboration with Projects Abroad,
and the school.

The children waiting for their parents to fetch them from the creche.

The wall of the Creche building has been painted over as there are some new ideas going to happen.

02/04/2015 - Today there was a special visitor to Gift of Hope. Who was it? The Easter Bunny came from a far away land to visit the children at VHCC. And the Easter Bunny brought all the good children a gift. And... some excitement and fun too.
They had an Easter egg hunt, and then the Easter Bunny left some Teddy Bears for each child. 
The Surfing and Recreation section of Projects Abroad volunteers brought some joy to the children before the Easter Weekend.

The Easter Bunny in disguise.

The children with their Teddy's.

See more.... 

March 2015.

28/03/2015 - Today 3 taxi trips took VH community members to the False Bay Nature Reserve
for the annual Birdathon 2015. The taxi fares were sponsored by the National Lotto funding project
which ZVT currently operates. 
A number of Gift of Hope parents with the older children who have not been to FBNR before had the opportunity to go this year.


Some of the hundreds of participants on the Birdathon 2015.

See more.... 

26/03/2015 - This week has been a busy week at VHCC.

There were 2 days of Abalimi Bezekhaya Garden Worhshops this week. And other activities.

See some photos of the outcome of the workshops below.

The garden at Marlene's house. The vegetable bed is being prepared for planting.

See more...


The crochet and knitting classes continued today.   See below.

Tanya showing the progress with the jersey she is knitting.

See more...


Then there was a sad and poignant farewell to two of Deen's Projects Abroad team today. See below.

The children saying goodbye to a tearful volunteer.

See more...

19/03/2015 - The knitting and crochet classes continued today. They are all progressing very well and
Lil has started to set projects for the outcome of the work. 

Gwen and Tanya busy. Tanya is knitting a jersey and Gwen is making place mats.

Lil van Ryneveld demonstrating what looks like an interesting pattern.

The plan for the Community Garden in the library.

The neighbour broke down part of her fence again, so Edward is making a separate fence for VHCC.

The garden needs a wind break to protect it from the SE wind.

The little ones have just woken up and are putting their shoes on and having a snack before going to play.

These two were quite happy to sit and watch the others at a distance.

12/03/2015 - The 2 volunteer student teachers from False Bay College (Muizenberg) continue to come and help do their practical year at the Gift of Hope creche.

The overhead powerlines are being replaced in Village Heights as the electricity supply has been very unreliable and disruptive since the shack fire last year when the cables were badly burnt be the flames.
This has disrupted the Gift of Hope feeding of the children as well.

 The vegetable garden has been doing well, tended by Edward.

The Kale is doing well.

The onions and carrots also looks good.

Some of the tamatos have been harvested.

In amongst the vegetables he has planted dahlias and evening primroses.

A number of evening primrose shrubs are planted to divide and space the vegetable varieties.

A single head.

A double and maybe a triple head.

Jean Williams from Biblionef is coming to visit the Library later today.

10/03/2015 - The City had an information sharing day at Village Heights. The Fire Brigade truck came and the crew spent the afternoon there. It became stuck and had to wait to be towed out. This gave a larger part of the community a chance to see the people and the truck and hear about what they do. 
The False Bay Nature Reserve staff came along with some live exhibits. 
And the Flying Squad and sniffer dog unit brought their different dogs along. They needed to be kept safe in an area so the VHCC childrens play ground was made into the "dog pound". They all learnt that all sorts of dog breeds are used for a variety of police work.

There has been trouble in the general area which has disrupted "normal" community activities.

February 2015.

26/02/2015 - The Projects Abroad team are working. Deen and his team have put on the roof sheeting and are plastering the walls inside. There are 2 volunteers from France and 1 from Germany working here currently.

Plastering up the gaps.

And chipping the dried cement off the floor.

The roof sheeting on.

Bernie has received a few book selves from the Vrygrond Library,
for which she is very thankful.

12/02/2015 - There have been no visits to VHCC this month due to the ongoing violence in the nearby areas. Not an easy or pleastant time for many families in the area.

January 2015.

27/01/2015 - The crochet class is producing some excellent work.

It is also a very busy time of the year with the new Gift of Hope children settling into the routines.
There are still children who have not been accepted at the some of the local primary schools for various reasons, and Bernie has been running around helping the parents to get these children placed for the new year.

Maureen modelling one of her new caps.

See what else the girls have made...

The wetland still looking good after the cleanup, even with the howling SE wind which brings all 
sorts of windborne junk into the wetland.

22/01/2015 - Going through the new books for the VHCC library.

In a rare quiet moment, Bernie was going through the new books donated by Biblionef.

19/01/2015 - Visitors from the Kingston University, London came to visit and participate with the community, co-hosted by the City of Cape Town, Biodiversity Management branch.  
They helped the local children and adults cleanup the wetland area. More than 250 bags of rubbish was removed by the City's Cleansing dept afterwards. Well done to everyone who helped achieve this.
They helped and demonstrated how to utilise discarded vehicle tyres and make them into seating arrangements. The seating areas were assembled in the demarcated areas of the Community Nature Garden as per the plan, guided by Marijke Honig and Loubie Rusch. See the Facebook link.

And afterwards they all had lunch. Bernie and her team making and serving the meal including many of the local community adult members who helped with the cleanup.

Then the Kingston University visitors went to the False Bay Ecology Park to see what is happening there.

The tyres have been drilled with holes so that the rope can be threaded through
into a grid pattern covering an opening and creating a seat for someone to sit on.

See what they did..... 

18/01/2015 - Biblionef has donated 50 new books for various age groups, mostly in the Afrikaans language. The balance in English.
Thank you, and the VHCC library gratefully accepts and appreciates these books for the community.

Jean Williams, the Executive Director of Biblionef with the box of books for the VHCC library.

09/01/2015 - The Friends and Neighbours of Village Heights, 2014 Newsletter by Jessica and Stephen.

Read the the Newsletter.

07/01/2015 - The Seawinds Clinic in Military Road serves the broader Lavender Hills and Seawinds communities. 
At the end of last year, beautiful mosaic finishes were applied on the exterior of the building.

One of the many mosaic finishes applied to the building.



See what happened in.

2014. 2013. 2012.


How you can help?    Zandvlei Trust is helping.

  • By donating money for transporting the children on educational and sport outings. (eg Zandvlei Nature Reserve, to Rondevlei Nature Reserve, to Muizenberg beach to learn to surf).

  • We need suitable library material (books, magazines, posters, paper, crayons, etc) for the creche and library. Various computer equipment and programmes are required.

  • We need  various seeds for the vegetable garden. Also gardening tools and implements.

  • We need a football and soccer jerseys, shorts and boots.

  • What skills training, education practise or help can you offer?

Contact   Gerrard Wigram      on  021 788 7622 the ZVT Treasurer,
  or  Sharon McCallum   on  021 788 8592 the ZVT Chair,
          or  Gavin Lawson         on  021 705 5224 if you need more information.

Date Name Item updated
Oct 2015 Joan Wigram Skills training, sponsor, skills mentoring. -
July 2015 B.E.N (Marina) Bicycle donation -
April 2015 The Waffle House, Ramsgate. Donation -
March 2015 The Waffle House, Ramsgate. Donation -
Jan 2015 Biblionef SA Books for various age groups at the Library. -
Sept 2014 Jan Vathjunker and Friends School uniform donations and skills mentoring. -
Aug 2014 Tony van Ryneveld Skills training, sponsor. -
July 2014 Lil van Ryneveld Skills training, sponsor, skills mentoring. -
Feb 2014 Biblionef SA Books for various age groups at the Library. -
Feb 2014 ATKV Johannesburg Books for the library. -
Feb 2014

Vincent Marincowitz

Books for the library. -
Jan 2014

Marina da Gama residents

School starter packs for 1st year children. -
Jan 2014 The Lions, Bergvliet,
Mrs Saville
Educational materials for pre school creche. -
Dec 2013 The Lions, Bergvliet,
Mrs Saville
Educational toys for the Christmas party. -
Dec 2013 Una Hartley  PC equipment and furniture.


Oct 2013 Barry Parker PC equipment. -
March 2012 Gerrard Wigram Skills training, accounts. -
March 2012 Sharon McCallum Skills training,
communications, social services and development.
Feb 2012 Gavin Lawson

Skills training, communications, social services and development.

June 2010 Pollsmoor Prison Outreach programme. Food donations -
April 2007

Projects Abroad - Deen Singh and his teams.

Construction, social development and services. -
Jan 2007 The Christ Church, Constantia. Food hampers and clothing.




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