Wow what a nice camp, it is winter time in South Africa and also school holidays. It is unbelievable when you see how Mpilonhle fights bad behavior that usually occurs at this time of the year.
Pregnancy rates usually increases especially in our youth and crime is also high because every child wants to go to town while they don’t have money to buy as a result they just decide to steal in shops which is a very bad idea, we wish to build and motivate these children and protect them from going to jail because of bad behavior.
Street kids develop or increase in large numbers because children stay at their homes doing nothing and some of them they just decide to stay in the streets then start smoking and robbing people.
KwaGiba is a rural area. The lifestyle of this community is different and regarding healthy behavior I think there’s poor knowledge. When there’s no knowledge diseases will increase especially HIV and AIDS. Agree or disagree we have to talk to these children and tell them the truth through our health education.
Thanks to Mpilonhle organization for supporting, helping, fighting poverty and crime, giving hope and encouraging children to live a healthy life through activities and with relevant language that is understandable to a child and also giving them the opportunity to know their status as individuals and know more about life and themselves which is a great opportunity. No one wishes to miss even one day at the camp and you can’t even ask them what it feels like to be at the Skills Camp because you’ll have your answers in their faces.
KwaGiba is between Hluhluwe and Mbazwana. It has a high enrolment of more than 1800 pupils and overcrowded classes, even if the school might have computers it might be impossible for all learners to attend and learn but in these camps Mpilonhle brought three (3) mobile units with seventy two (72) computers. Each unit takes in a group of twenty four (24 and) everyone has an opportunity of at least one hour session at the computer room for five (5) days learning computer literacy.
KwaGiba was rated as another successful Skills Camp, the children wish that the camps should continue and continue but the mid term holidays were over and there was no way for this great opportunity. Well done to Mpilonhle staff for their good work.
The food at these camps was delicious and healthy as this was winter season we had to give oranges because they have vitamin C and after they finished all activities of the day they ate well cooked meals with vegetables.
In the last day hundreds of Toms shoes were distributed to every child attending the camp and official closing of the camp was well presented by the Skills Coaches Team through a drama, this drama was bout HIV/ AIDS and sexual abuse.
This story was edited by Nomathemba
Three mobile unit teams sharing one vision, one mission and one aim service delivery “Mpilonhle’s mission to improve the health and social development of persons in the Umkhanyakude District”. We are committed to our work
Make the circle bigger it our official opening and closing of the camp and its where we introduce the aim of the camp, Mpilonhle, entire staff, schedule overview and assigning tasks.
Thanks to Tom shoes for continuing donating thousands of shoes to learners, what I’ve learnt is that some of the learners they use this shoes as their normal school shoes indeed there was a need for this. During school gathering or brake time you can notice that everyone is comfortably wearing Tom shoes and that’s grate.
Arrival of Tom shoes and off load
Photographs were collected at various Skill Camps
SILETHUKUKHANYA HIGH SCHOOLS HOLIDAY CAMP
27 June 2011 to 28 June 2011
Camps…! Oh yeah! Schools holiday camps, wonderful!
One may ask why camps?
Camp is a great learning and social system for learners, this is one of the good ways of having relevant teachings to the youth that is still at school, because schools holidays sometimes becomes a gap that is not properly planned for by most parents to do something with their children at homes. And now Mpilonhle is really there for those learners to tackle some vital issues that are hanging in their lives, like making good choices in life is not just an easy channel to tune into and you can keep on searching for it in most days of your life, some end up in herbal rehabilitation centres because they sometimes didn’t get the chance to talk in their peer group openly, facing realities of life under full support of Skillz coaches. Talking about issues touching drugs abuse, domestic violence, Gender based violence, gender norms and also stigma and discrimination to those affected or infected by HIV/AIDS.
So all the support to kids in our day camps come from Mpilonhle staff such people are Life Skillz Coaches, Health Educators, Health Counsellors, Nurses and Social Workers in one site and having Computer Basic Education alternating with superb fun in team building exercises with the help of professional soccer clinics rendered by Mpilonhle soccer team players.
Ntokozo in the centre leading the team building exercise and Mxolisi as an assistant outside the circle
It is truly a wonderful event for learners to undergo such activities because they also find themselves engaging in topics they never thought that they- themselves can have an insight to those topics, these things are sometimes shocking when you listen to the kid’s “hot stories”- sometimes the facilitator pretends absent to let the conversation flow without formal conversation norm. So it makes them to show their true colors in their beliefs; and myths and in that way it becomes easy for a person leading the activity to tackle those things.
Your guess can be good as mine; Mama Sbongile is cooking for the camp participants “Nice ne?” Mpilonhle normally serve fruits and healthy full meal for lunch with juice for participants in the camp.
“It’s hard to believe it, Hey! I was there at Mabhida stadium. My dream came true, gratitude’s to Sony for donating world cup tickets including meals to us at Mpilonhle”
Having camps was indeed a superb experience. All the camps were basically great but the one that has a different experience for me, was the Maqhama Camp. WHY? Because on the 22nd of June, 2010 we went to Mabhida in the game of Nigeria vs Japan. We were all on top of the world, coaches and kids that earned ticket to attend the game. Our work pretty went beyond limits though because during the day we had a camp running amazingly, afternoon we were chaperoning the kids to and in the game. That became a serious full time responsibility looking after kids of which it gave us a nice experience and tasted our real compassion of working with kids.
On our way to the stadium we were engulfed by the power and spirit of world cup soccer tournament, we were overwhelmed other kids were crying because of joy and shock of the offer given to them- they couldn’t believe what Sony did for them. Other coaches didn’t sit down in the buses until we reach the stadium at the travelling distance of 175KLM they were singing, blowing vuvuzelas and shouting kilos. That made a mark and became the history to us. We enjoyed the game and there were no challenges.
We went back home and reached our places in the early morning hours 2h00am, at 7h00 everyone was up and ready to meet the kids again at 8h30 we reached camp sites and got to normal duties with full excitement, vuvuzela’s were still blowing in my ears I’m telling you.
The last day of the Richards Bay camp for three sites, Maqhama- Ilembe and Dlangezwa. These sites were at Ilembe primary at Esikhawini on the 5th day of the camp for kids graduation purposes, WHY? These camps were sponsored by Castrol, RIO TINTO, Richards Bay Minerals and implemented by Mpilonhle in partnership with Grassrootsoccer. There is a lot happened on that day I’m telling you, when we were arriving on site there was a big white tent erected in the soccer field at Ilembe the amazing sound system everything was strictly formal and well organized, the certificates of attendance for the kids made by Castrol were so nice, I felt overwhelmed tears filled my eyes looking at all this and kids being excited and at the same time I felt so shy and confident at the same time Thokozani Hlophe(Camp President from Mpilonhle) and Zinhle(GRS M&E Officer) were running around busy putting us in-charge of the program Nkosinathi Xhakaza (Camp Director at Dlangezwa site from Mpilonhle)was a program director, Khethiwe Madela (Ilembe Camp Director- hosted the whole function) and Mom Dudu(Health Educator from Mpilonhle) thanked everyone for support with a very nice and professional speech. There was a speech from one of coaches, one from kids and other special speeches from community leaders.
I like to give everyone a great gratitude for making these equipping events possible and successful.
Ya ne! The camps was one of the things that I will never forget in my life. It was a wonderful experience and it taught us lot of things like being a caring adult and way of overcoming problems. So we had camps in different sites like Kwa Mduku, Dlangezwa, Skhawini, Kufezekile and Phaphasi, so we had openings for our camps where we pray sing our “ZUPE!” song and give kids name tags, divide them into groups and give them food. We also had closing for the camp where we ask kids what they learnt and gained during the camp.
Nathi used the vuvuzela to signal the end of sessions.
As you all know that we hosted world cup and we decided to use a horn (VUVUZELA) for change of sessions, which made our participants so excited since there was this soccer fever .The support that we had from the participants it made me forget that we had to eat and rest because we had to be at work by 5:00 am in the morning, collect coaches and go to the camp. During the camp we had to give services like Health education, Health counseling, Social services, Skillz activities and Computer training for the community.
After the camp we had to escort them (kids) to the world cup games and that is also a thing that kids will never forget in their lives and we would come back late at night 2am and we had to go to work at 5am. Wow for me I will never forget camps and world cup.
This Holiday Camp was organized and prepared by Mpilonhle team namely: Gugu Zulu, Beni Williams, Annastacia Ngidi and Chris Kaimmer.
The camp took place in the Makhasa Sport Complex with help of local Mayor Mr Khumalo, who gave Mpilonhle a wonderful experience in working with Mduku Kids and adults in furthering and advancing the vision of Mpilonhle in equipping the community with health based information leading to behavioral change, bringing about the vital conversations to kids and adults- talking about those things people don’t want to talk about in their homes, churches or even those who are in relationship don’t talk about.
We had all Mpilonhle services in place running as ever, Computer education, Health Education, HCT and Skillz practices- new curriculum 1.1 it was a wonderful experience for our skillz coaches because it was their first time to perform the 1.1 guide after their training which led to attention to people of GRS who are our partners in this mission.
GRS VISIT- We had visitors in the site that came to see what we were doing: Derik from GRS- trainer and overseer of the curriculum that we are using, He was overwhelmed by the energy and the way our skillz coaches are delivering the practices. The promise he gave to coaches is since we’re the first site to train and perform the 1.1 curriculum in African sites. Our pictures are going to be featured in the third addition guide.
Maputo FM- We were also visited by the media from Maputo land FM and requested to have some interviews with our staff it went well and they were impressed seeing what we are doing and kids are enjoying it. They also promised to broadcast our interviews on their station on the 18 June 2010 at 18h00 to 18h30 on the famous program called Ezishisayo(current stories), and they are also looking forward to have us on their radio station for the live broadcast interviews
DOH-We then had Department Of Health that came with a nice brief session talking about MMC, HCT and TB lessons to kids that were attending Mpilonhle programs.
And everything happened accordingly, kids tested got health education, adults tested and went through health education and computer basic education.
Last Friday Mpilonhle Finally took part in the hype that has gripped South African workplaces. We have shown our support to Bafana Bafana by wearing their jerseys.
The educators are also wearing their Bafana bafana jerseys. No matter what happens during the World cup, one thing is certain we are behind our team.
Whenever an athlete walks onto the field of play, the greatest fear is getting injured. You cannot think about it much. It happens unfortunately. When a footballer gets injured there are two things you think about: 1. How bad is it? 2. How long will he be out of the game for?
This year Mpilonhle has established a football team. I have reported on many of the matches we have played. The injuries we have suffered have been minor, just a few knocks and some bruises nothing serious.The combination of the size of the players, speed of play, and physical nature of the game makes football injuries quite common.
The two injuries that most footballers fear are head injuries & leg breaks or fractures. Football is a contact sport. As we all know any contact sport injuries are common. The past 3 weeks Mpilonhle FC has been in training for the games this month. Last week Wednesday we had a practice session & Bheki got a fracture on his leg. It will take sometime to recover fully from it. When it happened I was outside looking on. Hearing the sound of bone cracking was gruesome and very scary. It makes you think twice about taking to the field again. I just hope he has a speedy recovery. Bheki loves to play football and I so wish he could get back to playing the game at a later stage. He was looking forward to the game on Friday 30 October.
Some of the players have developed second thoughts about playing after this latest unfortunate injury. I will continue to play as I know that injuries are part of the game. I will dedicate the match on Friday against Masibonisane to Bheki. I just hope I am not the only one who still wants to play the beautiful game.