Domino Effects Newsletter

SWOP SHOP UPDATE QUARTER 1

In South Africa, waste management has evolved over the past quarter of a century. Since early 2000, local communities have seen initiatives to improve the quality of waste-management. The Domino Foundation’s Recycle Swop Shop is one such initiative where recycling and drop-off centres have been established to bring an economic incentive to communities who learn the value of recycling. An added aspect of these programmes is environmental upgrade and preservation which inevitably accompanies its outworking.

The Swop Shop collection and shop days happen weekly during the school term, as the Swop Shops are situated at primary schools in Dunoon and Phillipi in Cape Town where the programme operates. Phillipi’s recycling collection is managed by the school teachers rather than by the Swop Shop team This is another aspect of the programme’s empowering the local community to take ownership of the activity which impacts an ever-widening spectrum of the community. Recyclable materials are stored in a container onsite at the school and, when the container is full, the school notifies the programme leaders to send the recycling company with which Swop Shop works to make a collection. The Phillipi Shop has seen a falling-off of the recyclables being brought in over the past few months and hence the drop in the number of tokens been handed out. The reasons for this and how to motivate the community to embrace more whole-heartedly will need to be investigated and addressed so that the considerable positive impact the programme has seen in the past can be reached again and then maintained.

Each Wednesday of the school term, members of the community in Dunoon township come laden with recyclable material to The Domino Foundation’s Swop Shop at Enkwenkwezi School. The material is sorted and weighed and paid for in coupons and so becomes a means of exchange for basic necessities. As an empowerment initiative, this gives the community the opportunity to help themselves and break the mentality of hopelessness. The last Wednesday of the first term saw a veritable mountain of plastic bottles brought in which will now not be going into the City’s landfill. As a by-product of the Recycle Swop Shop programme, the aim is to instil an understanding of recycling and its importance in caring for the environment. In the process of giving the community the ability productively to “earn” so that basic toiletries and foodstuffs and other essentials can be “purchased” in exchange for the coupons, the vision is to beautify the Dunoon area (and the areas where the other Swop Shops operate in Cape Town), reduce the chance of disease, provide safe areas for play and inspire a sense of pride in the community. The ladies of Dunoon are grasping this vision of becoming effective environment changers. Leader of the Recycle Swop Shop programme, Riaan van der Westhuizen, said that he is amazed at the quantities of recyclables which the community members bring in: “This past year we were inundated with 1203 kgs of plastic which we sold on to a recycling company.  With the proceeds we are able to stock our Swop Shops.” The latest national recycling figures for plastics show that South Africans are recycling more plastics than before, which paints a brighter environmental picture. Each year, South Africans throw out well over a million tons of recyclable plastic. The pressure is on…the Western Cape may be soon facing a crisis with many landfills rapidly filling. In some areas, landfills could have reached their capacity in less than a year. The good news is that, of that, a good 40% finds its way into recycling. The Dunoon community, in hauling their blue plastic bags bulging with recyclables to the Recycle Swop Shop each week, is playing a vital part in this bid to save our environment.

As a fund-raiser and as an awareness initiative, The Domino Foundation had a team of riders complete the 2018 Cape Town Cycle Tour in March. The enthusiastic pedallers completed the gruelling but spectacular race around the peninsular sporting the cycling kit with the new corporate look.

The community at ‘Life Changers Church’ in Tableview and Milnerton regularly shows its generosity through donations of clothing to the Swop Shop programme. Fund-raising for the programme is an area which constantly needs to be revisited with regards to its tactics and targets. Life Changers Church has planned a Clothing Drive to run through the winter months so that the Swop Shops have an adequate supply of warm wear for the chilly weather. If you would like to contribute, please contact Sammy on adminct@domino.org.za or 021 557 7704.

The Recycle Swop Shop team was delighted to welcome Sammy Hart to assist with the programme’s administration from her base at the offices at Life Changers in Tableview. Riaan van der Westhuizen, leader of the Swop Shop programme said, ”Sammy’s coming on board will lighten the bureaucratic load  and will ensure a greatly strengthened link between the programme and the bigger Domino Foundation family and its other six programmes.”

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Life Skills Programme Update – 3rd Quarter

 

We are delighted that Nonhlanhla Majola has joined the team as a Youth Worker.

A total of 104 Life Skills lessons were taught in the course of the third term.

An introductory meeting with Edge Training has led to agreement being reached to pilot an after-school sports programme, either in Term 4 2017 or Term 1 of 2018.  Edge is awaiting sponsorship of equipment for this.

The Grade 7 learners from Zwakele took part in the Edge Schools leadership training 14-16th August.

Lifeline’s course, “Protective Behaviour” is being looked at with the team possibly going for training for February 2018. Meetings are being held to discuss training in counselling.

In 2018, one of the workers with the Life Skills programme will be offering Zulu dancing at the school as an extra-curricular activity.  A proposal is being put together to offer debating and leadership-training with class representatives and prefects is being considered.

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Medical Students Impact Matrics

With its express purpose of empowering school learners to make wise life-choices, The Domino Foundation’s Life Skills programme was delighted to have four UKZN medical students tutoring the Grade 12 learners at Amaoti 3 Combined. Working together with the school’s Principal, Mrs Maphumulo, and Physical Science teacher, Mr Majiya, the four university students, (Gift Machabe, Ayanda Nkosi, Sinethemba Mgolombane and Siyethemba Zwane) gave sixteen hours of Maths and Science coaching to the Amaoti learners on Saturday mornings. During this time, the medical students also facilitated an HIV/AIDS awareness workshop. Thanking them, Mr Majiya said, “Our students owe much of their success in their exams to your input”.

The Domino Foundation Life Skills programme reaches primary school children in the early teenage years in the Amaoti community. We believe that behaviour change is best effected through long-term relationships with learners in the formative phase of their lives. We impact a number of schools and reach children between the ages of 6 and 17 years. Our vision is to empower learners to make wise life choices, instilling in them a sense of self-worth and purpose and offering them hope for the future.

The Life Skills Programme comprises a four year HIV/AIDS prevention programme which runs at primary schools as part of the Life Orientation lesson. The project goal is to impact the lives of children who are vulnerable and under threat of HIV/AIDS. Work is done with children from 9-13 years assisting with their physical, cognitive, emotional and relational support and development.

The Domino Foundation Life Skills programme is dependent on both corporate and individual financial donors, on non-financial donors and on volunteers. If you would like more information, please contact Leigh-Ann Stevens (leigh-ann@domino.org.za) or 0315639605

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Red Light Programme Update – 3rd Quarter

During the third quarter, Red Light has conducted various training sessions with a number of communities, equipping individuals for the fight against trafficking and exploitation of vulnerable persons. Red Light personnel received an intensive three days of training by UNDOC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime). That event, government and non-government bodies were able to discuss combatting trafficking in South Africa and methods to support survivors and prosecute perpetrators.

The Red Light programme has been able to create economic sustainability and employment opportunities through co-labouring with our beneficiary. This has enabled our beneficiary to earn a monthly sustainable wage through vocational training.

Our jewellery and swop-shop scheme has played a big role in assisting our beneficiary with day-to-day provision for her basic needs. Through our walking shoulder-to-shoulder with our beneficiary, we were able to pinpoint her struggle with literacy and communication in English. She was referred to UKZN were she is now completing educational assessments.

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Recycle Swop Shop Programme update – 3rd Quarter

The Recycle Swop Shop Programme was officially launched as part of The Domino Foundation when Executive Chairman Richard Mun-Gavin travelled to Cape Town to present to the Life Changers community the Foundation in all its seven programmes. Between January and mid-September this year, the Swop Shop’s three sites have seen a total of 23812kg of recyclables brought in. The Swop Shop operation at Wesbank No. 1 Primary School has been suspended because of security concerns.

The Domino Foundation Recycle Swop Shop Programme is dependent on both corporate and individual financial donors, on non-financial donors and on volunteers. Samantha will welcome any enquiries at adminct@domino.org.za

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Skills Development Programme update – 3rd Quarter

With mid-year exams now behind them, the three students who have Skills Development bursaries for university studies are to be congratulated on all having obtained straight “A’s.  A total of 22 people have received the opportunity to enrol for learnerships, college and university study in a variety of disciplines and practical skills. Bleistahl Manufacturing South Africa, the Whalley Collective and Vetter and Associates have been extremely generous in funding these young people. Two are studying to become teachers and the third is doing Dental Therapy. One young man who has completed a course in welding is looking for employment. If anyone has an opening for him, please contact the Foundation on 031 563 9605.

The Domino Foundation Skills Development Programme is dependent on both corporate and individual financial donors and would be pleased to partner with other corporate entities in seeing the programme’s reach expand.

 

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A Great Start to the Day

Each morning, before the school day begins, Thandeka Duma has a large group of children come to her Young Stars Development and Nutrition Centre on an open plot of land in Illovo Township. There they are fed breakfast and again lunch at the end of class later in the day.  Thandeka is helped by a number of local ladies who are out of work to prepare the food. The Domino Foundation’s Feeding programme in Amanzimtoti kitchen supplies her with bread, peanut butter, mealie meal and rice to help in her project to fill stomachs so that the pupils can apply themselves to their studies more effectively.

If you are keen to help with the Feeding Programme in the South Basin area, please contact Cheryl Dann (feedingtoti@domino.org.za/082 444 9592).

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Brain Food

It may be the weekend, but for the Matric students at Siyabonga Secondary School in Amanzimtoti, it’s time to push ahead with their studies for those all-important exams. Saturday morning lessons and afternoon study sessions were instituted to give the students a firmer grasp on their subjects. Mr Dlomo, the School Principal, said that Siyabonga Secondary had had almost a 100% pass rate last year. He attributed this success to the students receiving peanut butter sandwiches during their Saturday study-time through The Domino Foundation’s Feeding programme.  The children’s attendance at school and extra tuition and their conscientiousness  had improved dramatically and their concentration ability was markedly stronger.

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Stacks of Sandwiches

It was cold and wet and the sun had scarcely made an appearance, but the Consumer Studies Kitchens at Northlands Girls’ High was bright with enthusiasm. The Grade 12 girls were deftly spreading peanut butter and Rama on mountains of bread, making sandwiches for The Domino Foundation’s Feeding programme. Every Friday morning, before school begins, another class gathers to put together about 350 sandwiches. These are then collected by the Foundation and distributed to some of the more than 70 crèches and schools around the city which benefit from the almost 98 000 meals the programme organises each month. Staff member in charge of the school’s initiative, Sonja Goris, said she was thrilled at the response of the pupils. One of them, unable to join the early-morning brigade, was determined not to miss out on being able to make a difference to someone else’s life and so made up eight loaves worth of sandwiches at home. The two Matric students who have been instrumental in getting Northlands’ Bread Buddies project off the ground, Sajel Mahadeo and Merissa Chetty, said it was very gratifying to see their fellow students embracing the opportunity to touch the lives of people who would otherwise not have something to eat during a demanding day at school. Other schools or groups interested in being part of The Domino Foundation’s Feeding programme can contact Rowan Phillips (volunteer@domino.org.za).

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Words, words, words!

To mark International Literacy Day, celebrated annually on 8 September, Glen Anil-based automotive parts supplier, Grandmark, sponsored a two-and-a-half-hour event at Zwakele Primary School. Grandmark staff worked with youth workers of The Domino Foundation Life Skills programme and Grade 4 teachers to ensure its success. Each class had a session of an arts-and-crafts activity (making a bookmark, we didn’t play a game – playing a game and having a chance to have a photo-booth literary character photograph taken).  Some of the donated shared-readers were then read by Grandmark staff to each class.  The event ended with an official handover of books to the school for future use by Grade 4 learners and was followed by a treat and snack for all participating learners.  The school and The Domino Foundation’s Life Skills programme expressed their gratitude to Grandmark for partnering with the programme. Julia Knowler, an expert in reading material for school children and the organiser of the purchase of the readers through Sherin Books and Charts, was also thanked. In all, twelve large shared-reading books and 432 individual reading English language reading books were donated.

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