August and September Update on the Kekana Gardens Project

August and September Update on the Kekana Gardens Project

INTRODUCTION

The Kekana Gardens community is situated on the border of the Dinokeng Game Reserve where ERP is currently working on an elephant monitoring programme. The location and proximity of this community to the privately owned Game Reserve positions it as a classic ERP project – conserving elephants and rhinos, through the alleviation of poverty -, which is why we have concentrated our community development interventions there, in an effort to address the rampant poverty and unemployment in the area.

WHAT HAS BEEN DONE SINCE MANDELA DAY?

Mandela Day on July 18th 2017 saw ERP spending time within Kekana Gardens, particularly at the Botlhokwa Bja Ngwana Orphans Day Care Centre and Seikokotlelo Old Age Home where we were also able to hand out several donations in the form of food parcels and toiletries. ERP gave a commitment that this would not be a once off intervention, and we would continue offering support to these community based interventions. Below, we highlight some of the activities we have been busy with since July 2017.

  • AUGUST: Additional donations to the Orphans Day Care Centre

We received additional donations from groupelephant.com’s members of staff based in the United States and in South Africa. These donations covered food parcels, toiletries, toys and shoes and were earmarked for the Orphans Day Care Centre. Magazines were also donated for the kids to use for art, and we were also able to donate some to the local library.

 

  • SEPTEMBER: More donations to the Day Care Centre and Old Age Home 

In the first week of September, we were able to deliver yet another donation to both the Orphans’ Day Care Centre and the Old Age Home. This was facilitated through the funds raised by groupelehant.com’s (South Africa Office) Talent Management Team in the days leading up to Mandela Day 2017. We used the funds to purchase utensils, plates, cups and e’Pap for both groups of beneficiaries.  The split, as shown below, was based on the wish lists we received from the two organisations:

    Old Age Home

  1. 25 plates
  2. 30 spoons
  3. 30 forks
  4. 25 cups
  5. 20kg ePap and 1 bucket of ePap peanut butter

Orphans Day care Centre

  1. 35 plates
  2. 40 spoons
  3. 40 forks
  4. 50 cups
  5. 20kg ePap and 1 bucket of e’Pap peanut butter

It is important to note that we received positive feedback from Mr Ruth Maruma, the director of Seikokotlelo Old Age home regarding e’Pap, which she said has started to invigorate the elderly residents at the Home.  This was the primary reason why we added the e’Pap to both organisations’ wish lists. We also bought a 20kg bag of e’Pap for the local office of the South African National Civic Organisation (SANCO), seeing that we work closely with them in executing our day to day activities within the community. Images from September’s donations are given below:

 

Managing Waste through animal traction

Managing Waste through animal traction

Bochum, Limpopo, South Africa: Whilst our waste collection truck was booked in for service this week, our donkey owners got quite busy, helping with collecting and transporting recyclable waste materials from the landfill site to the buyback centre. This is pure animal traction at work for the betterment of our rural communities. #Donkeys4Development . Our end goal is not only to sustain livelihoods through waste recycling, but to also attach an economic value to donkeys within these rural communities.

 

 

 

Kekana Gardens Update

Kekana Gardens Update

Yesterday we went back to Botlhokwa Bja Ngwana Orphan Safe Centre in Kekana Gardens to deliver more groceries, shoes and books to the safe centre. Even though the kids were still in school, the tutors and care givers at the centre were overjoyed by this gesture. We also donated some magazines to the local library so that they can use these in their outreach programmes in schools. A big thank you to the dedicated Groupelephant.com members of staff both in South Africa and abroad for their continued generous support. #BeyondCorporatePurpose #ERP 

 

RELOCATION UPDATE! ERP Elephant Relocation Aug 22

RP’s Dinokeng Bull Elephant Relocation Programme has started. The bull boxes have arrived and we are preparing to relocate four stunning bulls from the Dinokeng Game Reserve in South Africa, to Zinave National Park in Mozambique.

ERP is supporting Dinokeng in the relocation of the bulls as they have learned a habit of breaking fences and this has created problems for the reserve management team. Culling was a last option if the bulls could not be moved and 

See More

 

ERP Spends Mandela Day at Kekana Gardens

ERP Spends Mandela Day at Kekana Gardens

Mandela Day 2017 saw a collective entourage of ERP spending time at the old people’s home and orphan day care centre in Kekana Gardens, just outside of Dinokeng Game Reserve. Representatives from iLAB, Epi-Use Africa, ERP Elephant Management Unit and the P.E.A.C.E. Foundation joined hands to deliver food parcels and clothing items to Seikokotlolo Old Age Home and Botlhokwa Bja Ngwana Safe Centre for Orphans. This was a follow up of the site visit we all had to this community one week prior to Mandela day where all parties resolved to start working towards improving the lives of those within Kekana Gardens.

The day’s proceedings

We all met at Dinokeng Game Reserve office shortly before 2pm and we immediately proceeded to the SANCO offices for a quick briefing on how we would travel and what would be done at the respective centres we would be visiting. Thereafter, we set off for the old age home which was our first stop. We were welcomed by the Founder of that place, Mrs Ruth Maruma who gave us a brief background on how she started the old age home, challenges she faces on a day to day basis running the place and how many people she takes care of including her members of staff. She also was able to take us on a tour of the home itself which was quite interactive as some members of our group were able to ask questions. After the tour, we then proceeded to present all the gifts that had been brought through, including assorted food items (based on their wish list) and five big bags of ePap (5x50kg). Both Mrs Maruma and the people at the home were overwhelmed by this gesture, which immediately prompted them to break into song and dance. Our delegation was also able to mingle with the people cared for at the home, introducing ourselves, all the while sharing stories with them.

Upon leaving the old age home, we headed straight to Botlhokwa Bja Ngwana Safe Centre where we also received a warm welcome. About 15 kids were at the centre, with some having gone off on holiday since schools have closed for the term. Our delegation immediately connected with the children, and most could be seen interacting with them even before we had formal welcoming remarks from the manager at the centre. All food items (including 5x50kg bags of ePap), clothes, shoes and toys were offloaded, into the centre, whilst both our delegation and staff and kids from the centre broke into song and dance yet again. We later converged outside the main ‘building’ at the centre and had a quick orientation and talk from the Manager, Ms Nkele Maubane, who then formally welcomed us whilst expressing her gratitude to our gesture. All children at the centre were then presented with ‘party packs’ filled with an assortment of goodies, and two home baked cakes were presented to them. Whilst part of our group broke out to further discuss with the Manager and her team, others could be seeing playing ball games with the children and chatting with them, and judging from the children’s reactions, they were enjoying every moment of this visit. Before our departure, the children were able to do a presentation of their own to us, singing their own songs as a gesture of thanking us for the visit. We then left the safe centre just before 5pm and headed back to our respective destinations upon meeting for a quick vote of thanks from SANCO at their offices.

Conclusion

We would like to thank iLAB, EPI-USE Talent Management team, ERP Elephant Management Unit and the P.E.A.C.E. Foundation for all their contributions towards ensuring that this day was an impactful one to those who are less privileged in our society. This truly was a show of the strength of ERP, bringing us all together from our different backgrounds and work spaces for the good of a community that we all hold dear to our hearts. We also are grateful to SANCO for their hospitality and making time to take us through this community. In the words of the great Nelson Mandela himself, “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” Let this gesture on Mandela Day 2017 be the beginning of how as the ERP collective, we will change lives in Kekana Gardens, going beyond Mandela Day.

 

 

EPI-USE Africa Talent Management Team volunteers for Mandela Day

EPI-USE Africa Talent Management Team volunteers for Mandela Day

The EPI-USE Africa Talent Management Team volunteered some of their yearly team building funds for ingredients to bake and sell muffins as part of their #MandelaDay #67 minutes initiative.  The proceeds of the sales will be used to feed vulnerable children at the Dinokeng Botlhokwa Bja Ngwana Safe Child Care Center. Several sustainable projects are being investigated and implemented around the area of the Dinokeng Nature Reserve, where we are also assisting in the conservation of Rhino and Elephant as part of the Elephants Rhino People, EPI-USE’s Beyond Corporate Purpose initiative.

Thank you to the team for contributing your #67Minutes to bake muffins! The result of your efforts is that more children can be fed with nutritious food including ePap. (See www.peacefoundation.org.za/donations-causes/ ) It might be a small contribution, but that is what the whole Mandela day initiative is about – if everyone in South Africa spends 67 minutes involved in an act of kindness, it adds up to a big act of kindness. We are glad to report that 648 muffins were sold through this intervention! Thank you to everyone for buying them, as well as for all the donations we received!

We plan to do this again to reach our aim of R10 000 and we hope we can count on your support!

#Bikes4ERP Crowdfunding Initiative

#Bikes4ERP Crowdfunding Initiative

Imagine a life in which you must walk over 3 hours a day just for the “privilege” of being able to attend school. In addition to the vast distance, you cross rugged terrain, endure extreme weather conditions and face possible physical injury.  By the time you return home, you barely have time to do your chores, let alone your homework.

This is a daily reality for many children in rural South Africa, which often leads to frequent absenteeism from school and ultimately dropping out altogether. Without school, the cycle of poverty continues. But we have an immediate, tried and true, solution to this problem.

From June 9 to June 14, ERP is conducting its prelaunch campaign. On Thursday, June 15, ERP’s #BIKES4ERP initiative will be launched via its Indiegogo/Generosity campaign in order to raise funds and awareness to address the solution to this problem.

But we need your help. This is our first attempt at crowdfunding and its success strongly depends on ERP’s online network. As such, our goal is to mobilize all of ERP’s online connections before launching its crowdfunding initiative. This is where you come in. We have the Indiegogo/Generosity prelaunch page ready to be shared and we request that you share it on social media and send it to anyone who you think might be interested in ERP’s #BIKES4ERP initiative. The link to ERP’s Indiegogo/Generosity prelaunch campaign is https://www.generosity.com/education-fundraising/bikes4erp–2

In addition, we have posted #BIKES4ERP on ERP’s Facebook page and request that you like and share it: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=elephantsrhinospeople.

Lastly, we have created a contest to raise funds and awareness regarding this issue. Simply take a picture with as many people on a bicycle as you can and share your photo on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #BIKES4ERP. All photos will be posted on Elephants, Rhinos & People’s Facebook page. Those who fit the most people on a bike will win a prize and will be highlighted on ERP’s website and social media.

Thank you very much for helping ERP make the #BIKES4ERP initiative as successful as possible. In the next couple of days, we will provide you with the launch details.