It’s hard to believe that it’s almost three months since one of our biggest projects thus far — Hope for Blikkies — was implemented on Christmas day. The festivities included handing out a hot meal, apples and icecreams to the children of Blikkiesdorp (officially known as the Symphony Way Temporary Relocation Area) as well as playing games.
10 March 2012 saw the Boundless Heart Foundation engaging in the first of many future projects at the Christine Revell Children’s Home in Athlone on the Cape Flats of Cape Town.
It has always been our desire to restore hope and our interaction with the young vibrant children of this Home reminded us and all the volunteers that all you have to do is share a little affection, laughter and amusement and you will be truly thanked (coupled with sticky fingers and a big hug that you never see coming).
Bud (our dedicated and amazing friend, who has joined us since Christmas Day) sums up the day beautifully:
With great dexterity small people tumbled down the stairs, their broad smiles and brightly coloured clothes painting a happy story, a fitting welcome to Christine Revell Children’s Home.
We were immediately encompassed by tiny eager hands, each child quickly adopting a volunteer, selective only in their search for a warm smile, a reassuring touch and the willingness to participate in a game, a song, or a strong arm to push a swing. Their only demand was for physical contact, an impromptu hug, a snatched snuggle, or simply the licence to run their fingers through your hair.
Delicious, warm hot cakes, lovingly made by Toni, were generously smeared with thick apricot jam. Bright red tongues licked sticky crumbs from chubby lips. Songs were sung and balloons popped as unconditional love was bestowed on us. Young arms entwined our legs as like small shadows they clung to new friendships. We already realised parting was going to be hard.
A large basket spilled red and yellow ‘phoo bear’ bags, each hiding a savoury surprise. Insatiable appetites quickly gobbled tiny cocktail sandwiches. More games, as grips tightened around our legs. No room for sausage rolls, sugary little cupcakes or bananas. The fridge was filled for another meal.
Laughter subsided as stories were read and the happy little group settled down for their rest time. We slipped away unnoticed, fearful of a tear – ours! As we drove out the gate we knew it would not be the last time.
The Boundless Heart Foundation would like to thank our friends (new and old) for making Balloon Day a very special day leaving both a lasting impression in the memory of the small people but also a lasting sense of love and hope in ours.
Thus far, Boundless Heart Foundation has been involved in the feeding of over 5000 people in the Mother City.
Our blitz feedings saw volunteers feeding the homeless on the streets of Cape Town from August 2011 onwards.
On Christmas Day, 2011, the Boundless Heart Foundation with The Taxi radio organised and executed Hope for Blikkies, an event that fed 3500 people (3200 of them children), and facilitated games and fun for the children of Blikkiesdorp (officially known as the Symphony Way Temporary Relocation Area).
We will continue our intervention work in the community of Blikkiesdorp, which is ravaged by the threat of unemployment, poverty, crime and social ills. A clear indication of this vision is our first step on 28 January 2012 where we dared to dream – a Day to Dream encouraged young children (aged 4 – 7) to have dreams, hopes and aspirations and be brave enough to bare it all for the world to see. The project will culminate in us hosting an art exhibition of their work reaffirming again that their dreams are not only special but they matter.
We are gearing our blitz feedings towards a more sustainable avenue and working together with children’s homes and old age facilities. Our first project of this kind was on 10 March 2012 when we hosted a Balloon Day at the Christine Revell Children’s Home in Athlone, reminding young children that they matter and that having a treat is not reserved only for birthdays and special occasions. The concept was to provide balloons, laughter, cake and something savoury to young children and share the joy of sharing and hope.
The Boundless Heart Foundation’s Books on the Move project seeks to cultivate a culture of learning and reading within distressed communities and/or schools, working in collaboration with those communities.
We plan to roll out eight Books on the Move mobile libraries this year — two four-levelled bookshelves on wheels which can lock — and stock these with appropriate, enriching and educational reading material.
We intend to distribute these mobile libraries to to four primary schools, one pre-primary school and three high schools in communities on the Cape Flats (possibly Heideveld, Delft and Bonteheuwel and Athlone/Surrey Estate at this stage) in Cape Town.
The building of these mobile libraries will not just be about building the structure of the Books on the Move but to stock the library with a living testament which speaks to service, hope, dreams and aspirations – growing roots of knowledge.
We are hoping to secure books — both new and old — through corporate sponsorships/donations and support from individuals.
Beyond the shelf
These mobile libraries will be our first step in engaging that community around issues which promote sharing ofhope. We will continue all our further interventions with that particular school and/or community around the Books on the Move.
Books on the Move will act as a catalyst around which our other intervention projects can take place such as blitz feedings; creative workshops (in collaboration with our informal partners Bambini Dream! and Future Factory); art exhibitions; up-skilling members of communities, planting/greening spaces and thereby Books on the Move becomes a symbol of hope and an avenue whereby members of the community can transform spaces.
Our vision in action
An example of the way in which this project moves beyond the physical confines of the mobile library would be transforming a currently empty gravelled space in Blikkiesdorp to become one in which books are read to young children. We envision nurturing arts and culture, helping to make this a space where people can perform and display their talent and skill. We also hope to assist in the greening of communities by planting trees and shrubs in desolate spaces.
More than books
Books on the Move is much more than just about books – it is about Keeping Hope Alive – giving roots to communities and schools in greater Cape Town.
If you’d like to get involved, please do get in touch!