Camp 38

Sibling Bereavement Camp | CHOC Children’s Cancer Foundation SA – Johannesburg  Phiri Camp Kwalata in the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve Gauteng

March 2014

Following a very successful camp for siblings of children with serious illnesses, Just Footprints hosted a sibling bereavement camp in March for children who have lost a sibling due to a cancer-related illness. 23 campers were given the opportunity to receive support and help with the grieving process in an appropriate format facilitated by the psychosocial team from CHOC Children’s Cancer Foundation SA. The death of a child following a serious illness is difficult enough for parents to bear. But the impact on the siblings of such children, who find it equally hard to deal with the loss, is often underestimated. For the 23 children who attended the weekend-long camp at Kwalata in the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve in Gauteng, it was an opportunity both to explore their feelings of loss in a safe and loving environment, as well as to have a huge amount of fun with other children of a similar age who have gone through the same experience.

Camp 39

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA – KZN | The Mercury Hibberdene Children’s Holiday Home  – KwaZulu-Natal

July 2014

35 children with cancer-related illnesses or blood disorders being treated at Albert Luthuli  Hospital in Durban and Grey’s Hospital in Pietermaritzburg enjoyed a 5 day camp of amazing experiences at a recent Just Footprints camp in Hibberdene on the KZN South Coast. The camp was packed with activities from morning to night, ranging from beach olympics and tug-of-war, to a morning of go carting in Margate, organised by the Port Shepstone Rotary Club. Later the same day, there was a visit to Dezzi’s raceway, during which six children joined raceway drivers in their stock cars for some “drifting”. Lots of sport, especially ones on the beach, kept the children busy and occupied. There was also an environmental walk to the main beach in Hibberdene, during which the children were lucky enough to spot dolphins and whales out at sea. Making sure that the camp programme ran smoothly was a team headed up by JFF Camp Director, Lindy Nieuwenhuizen, who was assisted by Volunteer and Programme Co-ordinator Cavall Burgess and seventeen volunteers and camp facilitators.

Camp 40

Fight with Insight – Hillbrow | Phiri Camp Kwalata in the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve Gauteng

August 2014

Camp Footprints hosted 48 campers from Fight With Insight (FWI) and 15 volunteers in August 2014 at our first “boot camp”.  FWI is a programme based in the inner city of Johannesburg providing boxing, lifeskills and nutrition for children from Hillbrow, the inner city, Rosettenville and surrounds. Its aim is to provide children with an alternative to the streets by giving them access to a boxing gym, lifeskills and nutrition. The camp was made possible by the sponsorship of Taste Holdings and The National Lotteries Commission.

Luke Lamprecht, director of FWI, says: “Our children live with an enormous amount of poverty, loss and trauma and a camp in the bush was seen as a wonderful opportunity for the children to broaden their experiences as well as a great support to our programme objectives to offer children alternatives. The camp was a life altering programme for the children who still ask us: ‘When are we going on camp again coach?’ The experience stuck with them for a variety of reasons and the main one was that, for probably the first time in some of their lives, they had more food than they could eat. For others it was the fact that someone cared enough about them to think of and actually do something just for them. In other instances it was the interaction with nature, the Just Footprints facilitators, their own bed, the open space in contrast to the inner city, the undivided attention of adults which they seldom receive. The list of positives for camp could go on and on! FWI’s experience of Just Footprints and the camp was that the organisation has great heart and a true desire to add positively to the lives of vulnerable children. The level of organisation, professionalism and care was exemplary and we unequivocally endorse the organisation, its staff and programme.”

Camp 41

Three2Six Project | Phiri Camp Kwalata in the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve Gauteng

Life as a refugee is tough in any context. But when the refugees are underage children, with no parental support, the business of simply surviving must be unbearable. Just Footprints Foundation and Sacred Heart College in Observatory, Johannesburg, joined forces to provide a wonderful camping experience for fifty refugee children. They were drawn from the Three2Six project, an initiative of Sacred Heart College that reaches out to child refugees in the inner city of Johannesburg. Most of the children on the programme are orphans and thus an opportunity to attend a camp in the South African bush with wild animals close at hand would be completely beyond their resources. Camp Footprints created a unique opportunity for them all, which they will remember for the rest of their lives.

Camp 42

CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation – SA | Phiri Camp Kwalata in the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve Gauteng

October 2014

The Olympics featured high on the list of activities for 72 children from CHOC Johannesburg and CHOC Pretoria when they attended Camp Footprints in October 2014. The children, all of whom are living with serious health challenges, enjoyed 5 days of fun in the warmth of the Kwalata Game Reserve under the care of Just Footprints staff and volunteers. The arts were another theme that was thoroughly enjoyed by the campers with Vivienne Abraham-Alivertiotis from Art of Healing Africa presenting an Africa paper prayers activity on two days. Each of the children received the traditional Just Footprints gifts of goodie bags with toiletries as well as Footprints branded caps, t-shirts, water bottles and bandanas. On behalf of the campers who attended this camp, we would like to extend our thanks to  The National Lotteries Commission for their funding towards making this camp possible.

Camp 43

Rena Le Lona | Phiri Camp Kwalata in Dinokeng Big Five Game Reserve, Gauteng

November 2014

Rena Le Lona is a creative centre for vulnerable children and children who have lost their parents to HIV/AIDS. Its aim is to heal children through the arts and sport. Thanks to the generous sponsorship of Taste Holdings and The National Lotteries Commission50 campers and 25 young adult volunteers joined us for a weekend of art, dance, sport and drama. The objective of the camp was to expose the children to wildlife, life skills, sports, and nature conservation in the bush surrounds of the Dinokeng Big 5 Game Reserve. Art and road safety were the main themes for the camp, and the children brought these to life through their drama evening, with some groups showing how to transport wildlife safely to another game reserve. Through dance and drama, others shared the dangers of drinking and driving and how you should adhere to road rules. Mlungisi Mvelase, centre manager of Rena Le Lona, said: “The whole camp was amazing, from the delicious meals and fun games to the hospitality. This camp has played a very big role in the healing of our vulnerable children and we would like to thank you for leaving such great memories that they will always treasure forever. We cannot thank you enough.”

Camp 44

Forest Town School, Johannesburg | Phiri Camp Kwalata in Dinokeng Big Five Game Reserve, Gauteng

November 2014

42 special needs children were the focus of our 44th camp in the Kwalata Game Reserve, Dinokeng. For a glorious three days, the children, all of whom were in Grades 1, 2 and 3 from the Forest Town School, Johannesburg, enjoyed the bushveld surroundings of the game reserve. The theme was arts, drama and dance, which made for much creativity from these wonderful children. Five staff members from Forest Town School assisted the corps of Camp Crew Members who have been trained by Just Footprints Foundation. Delicious food from the Phiri camp kitchen met all dietary needs, and our camp doctor, Dr Eddie Jooste, looked after the medical requirements. Our thanks sincere thanks to The National Lotteries Commission for their funding of this camp.

Camp 45

Sizanani Outreach Centre – Nkandla | The Mercury Hibberdene Children’s Holiday Home – KwaZulu  Natal

December 2014

The weather in KwaZulu/Natal for Just Footprints’ camp in December 2014 was again warm and sunny, making for much beach activity – and sunshine and fun was exactly what was needed for 118  children from the Sizanani Outreach Centre, a mobile home-based care service that delivers counselling, HIV-testing, peer education, social, medical and legal services in the Nkandla district of KZN.  The Centre also works to alleviate poverty and promote economic sustainability to families through the region. To the delight of all the children, Father Christmas arrived with much fanfare and with an age-appropriate gift for each child. This was followed by a delicious Christmas festive lunch, a treat very few of these children were likely to have ever received. The six-day camp was sponsored by Independent Newspapers.