Stellar Foundation recently hosted a group of 13 volunteers from the USA, sponsored by Wholefoods. We can truly say that the Wholefoods volunteers made a real difference in the lives of those who need it most. The group helped facilitate a large-scale upgrade at a disadvantaged South African primary school in Klawer, and made a meaningful contribution to a homeless shelter in Vredendal.
Welcome to South Africa
The volunteers kicked off their trip with a lovely Sunday lunch in Lambert’s Bay with Stellar Foundation. The next day, they visited a Rooibos tea factory in Clanwilliam and had lunch at Stellar Winery MD, Willem Rossouw’s, house where they joined local Riel dancers in an energetic traditional dance lesson.
Steilhoogte Primary School
From Tuesday to Friday, the team began what turned out to be an incredibly transformative project at Steilhoogte Primary School in Klawer. The learners, aged betw
een 5 and 14 years old, come from various backgrounds – some children don’t even have electricity in their homes.
In 2014, Steilhoogte appointed a new headmaster who set out to turn the school around. Together with his team, he succeeded in adding a computer room, cafeteria and even a school anthem. Stellar Foundation and the Wholefoods volunteers wanted to help the school by brightening up the playground and cafeteria and even planting a beautiful vegetable garden.
Adopt A Matriculant
The Wholefoods team also had the opportunity to ‘adopt a matriculant’. The team mentored the learners on choosing a career, and spoke about the different options available to them. The learners were fascinated by meeting Americans in real life, and were inspired by the valuable advice the team gave them.
The volunteers ended off their trip to South Africa by bringing a message of hope to Onse Kaia, a homeless shelter in Vredendal. The team felt passionate about inspiring the people who come there to keep busy and look for ways to build their self-worth. They motivated shelter guests to start planting their own sustainable container gardens – a great way to learn focus, patience and to enjoy the pride of the harvest.
The volunteers were so moved by the experience that they wanted to make even more of a difference. They pulled together to raise just over R3000, and as a kind gesture, fitted 16 beds with brand new bedding.
“We want them to sleep like kings and queens, and want to convey the message of the importance of their existence.”
After the Wholefoods team had left, one lady commented that she is almost fifty years old and never before, not even as a little girl, has she slept in such a beautiful bed.
Stellar Winery and Stellar Foundation would like to thank the Wholefoods Volunteers for all the wonderful work they’ve done during their visit to the tip of Africa. We are genuinely moved by your generosity and passion.