Children’s Christmas Party

GAPA Aftercare Christmas Party 3 December
The preparations…

All the excitement!!

Icing Christmas biscuits Judges of the colouring-in competition

Children arrive dressed in their best… GAPA staff sing for the children

The party begins

Mrs Sishuba and the children prepared dances…

and skits…filled with comedy And beautiful songs…More dancing…A day packed with fun!
Younger members also enjoyed the day

Children receive a blessing from Rev. Nyobole (GAPA board member)

Lunch time!

Finally… Father Christmas arrives!
Father Christmas (Mr Moceia)… cheers fill the hall! Soccer balls were so prized. Thank you to The Laser Group for their donation of soccer balls

Next Bafana-Bafana team…

Make-up sets! Thank you to all our sponsors!

Cars “moto”…they guessed before they’d opened it.

Wonder what this is?

Cupcakes specially baked by Kathleen Broderick – thank you they were delicious! …and party packs for each child

Thank you Charmaine and ladies of Edgemead for the beautiful dolls!

One of the colouring-in competition winners

From everyone at GAPA we wish to extend our heartfelt gratitude to making these dream a reality!
You have made a big difference in the lives of these children who a vulnerable due to the effects of HIV/AIDS

Thank you to:
The Laser Group
Charmaine Sparks and the ladies from Edgemead
Joan Kleynhans
Fionna and Toby
Ian and Annamarie Barry
Simone Jacobs
Andrew Thompson
Alan Taylor
Henk Kleynhans
May you have a blessed festive season!
Kind regards

Althea Barry
Programme Developer
GAPATel: 021 364 3138
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Beyond Christmas toys…

It has been overwhelming to see the generosity that people are showing towards the aftercare Christmas project.

Despite having reached our target donations are still coming in.  A big thank from all at GAPA!
This has afforded us the opportunity to dream beyond Christmas and start considering the new year as children will be making their way back to school. 
This been considered we will use the donated money for the following:
  • school supplies for the children as they return to their new classrooms (I remember the joy of starting a new year with new stationery)
  • equipping our aftercare classroom with much needed art and creativity equipment. Paper, pencils, paint, art aprons etc.
We really appreciate the opportunity your donations are giving us to plan our services for 2009.
Donations can be paid to the GAPA bank account: 
Please reference as Aftercare

Cheque Account (G.A.P.A.)
  No 4055545538
  Town Centre Branch
  Mitchells Plain 7785
  Cape Town
  South Africa
  Branch code is 632005

Donations to GAPA are tax deductible

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Christmas gifts so far…

Thank you so much for these generous gifts:

Charmaine Sparks and the ladies in her church (we hope to meet you soon) for the 20 dolls

The Laser Group (Feroza for organising) for 25 soccer balls (Thank you Charmaine and your husband for arranging this!)

Joan Kleynhans for her generous contribution of R500

Henk Kleynhans for his generous contribution of R200
Fionna and Toby for  their generous contribution of R500
Ian and Annamarie Barry for their generous contribution of R500
Simone Jacobs for  beautiful teddy bears, jewelry and make-up
Andrew Thompson for generous donation of $50 Australian dollars
Alan Taylor for generous donation of $100 Australian dollars
We’ve made it!! Thank you so much to everyone for making it happen! We can now go do shopping to make dreams come true!
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Opportunity to get involved in our Christmas party!

Grandmothers Against Poverty and Aids

J-415 Qabaka Rd
Khayelitsha 7784
Cape Town
Tel/fax 021 3643138 NPO no. 019-642
C: 074 198 2500
27 October 2008


GAPA is a Non-Profit organisation in Khayelitsha. We are a voluntary organisation that implements programmes to support grandmothers affected by HIV/AIDS in urban and rural communities to continue with their lives and to cope better as providers of care and support for their infected children.

In January 2007 GAPA started its Aftercare Service for 50 vulnerable children who attend the local primary school. The headmaster and teachers identified children who went home after school to empty homes, lived in shacks or were sickly. Currently, there are 100 children who attend the aftercare. The ages of the children range from 6yrs to 16yrs of age. Five grandmothers coordinate the enrichment programme for the children. They get help from other grandmothers that are able to teach skills such as knitting and beadwork. Home work is supervised, the children are fed and a choir has been formed. The grandmothers teach English literacy, tell traditional stories and teach traditional songs. This year in August, I joined the programme bringing a focus on health promotion through occupation.

As the year comes to an end, we wish to create a Christmas party for the children to celebrate the year that has past and enhance their sense of belonging.
Last week the children created a wish list for Christmas, attached are some of the pictures. The whole process of being given the opportunity to dream and hope for something is an important component towards building the children’s ability to cope with the difficult circumstances they find themselves in.

This table indicates the toys they chose:

Age 6-16
No. wanting balls
No. wanting cars
Age 6-12
No. wanting dolls
Age 13-16
No. wanting make-up, clothes & photo albums

Total girls 61 Total boys 39 Total children 100

We would greatly appreciate any donation (either of the actual toys or financial) you are willing to make in this regard.
At a budget of approximately R45,00 a gift the total financial target is R4500.

GAPA Bank details:
No. 4055545538
Swift Code ABSA ZA JJ
Town Centre Branch,
Branch code: 632005
Mitchells Plain 7785
Cape Town
South Africa
Cheque Account
Reference: Aftercare Christmas Party
Please email me with the amount so that I know how much to withdraw:

Please feel free to visit our blog site for more information on our day-to-day activities – We’ll post all sponsors on our blog.

Thank you!

Kind regards

Althea Barry
Occupational Therapist
GAPA, Khayelitsha

” All we want for Christmas…”


Car “motor”


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Animals wild and wonderful!

With the September holidays behind us this post is long overdue.

We had the wonderful priviledge of going on an outing with the 16 Grandmothers and 56 Children to the Tygerberg Zoo. We received a budget from the Stephen Lewis Foundation to have an annual outing for the aftercare, this is the highlight of the year and provides a much needed time for the children to discover more about the country they live in. The pictures speak for themselves but it is necessary to say that for many of the Grandmothers and children it was the first time to see animals such as lions, chimpanzees, wild dogs, cheetahs…even a cuddly looking brown bear.

The day ran wonderfully smoothly. We caught two hired Golden Arrow busses early in the morning and set off for our adventure about 4o km away. Grandmothers paired up and each took care of 10 children to make sure the children could ask all the questions they wanted. The zoo was a spralling maze of different enclosures for all sorts of wild africa (and other ) animals. After a morning of excitement we sat down to a nutrious meal packed by the grandmothers and used some of our energy on the jungle gyms. To end off a perfect day we set off to find the bears…peeking over a high wall 56 faces eargerly looked for the famous bear, who in his own time he slowly emerged from his sleep and filled us all with joy.
We appreciate the committment of all the grandmothers to making this day possible, to the GAPA staff for all the organising and to the funders for making this opportunity possible.
Mrs Nkone (new aftercare coordinator)
Mrs Skefile’s grandson ready to go the zoo
In a line…’can we get there already?”
Inside!! First thing we see are springbok. The children and grandmothers were initially scared of the animals despite the enclosures
King of the jungle – lionesses lazily lying in the grass
This picture doesn’t do justice to how big these tortoises were
Having fun trying to figure out what the chimpanzee was doing
White lion cubs – their paws were massive
Strange monkeys
Thank you and a beautiful smile from Bulela
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GAPA reaching out!

It has just been incredible to see how GAPA provides a space to support various community members.

Yesterday a young man of 22 bravely walking into the centre to greet a room full of grandmothers working on projects. He had come to ask for support. He openly admitted that he was HIV+ and that he felt the community, including his extended family, were discriminating against him on this basis. The grandmothers and Vivienne did not beat around the bush, through discussions with him they established that his real concern was that the community did not want to forgive and accept him due to his past criminal activities.

A forum of open discussion was quickly established and he honestly spoke about his past and present challenges.

He had moved to Cape Town from the Eastern Cape when he was in his late teens. Upon arrival he realised that he would have to fend for himself despite the roof provided by his extended family. During this time he turn to crime as a means of support.

The way in which the grandmother handled this information was amazing, they were not accepting of the criminal activity but embraced him as a human being. An emotional session of singing a praying followed. Ayanda (project manager) says ‘ it looked like he felt great afterwards, he was thankful and was at ease when he left.’

The young man was advised to go to the YMCA, Khayelitsha, for further counselling services since they provide a space to meet with other young men who are trying to ‘get back on track’.
Vivienne attributes the sudden influx of people seeking assistance from GAPA to the local radio talk shows she has been invited to speak on. As an organisation we are gearing ourselves up to learn to support people from the community better. 
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The wonder of play

So much joy can come from engaging with children!

Yesterday I was outside at the jungle gyms with the little children and we started exploring the environment. We came across a hairy caterpillar creeping along the pavement. This resulted in high excitement and daring. After a lesson on how it could cause itchiness if touched we moved onto learning how it becomes a butterfly. The children were ecstatic with this find. As the caterpillar kept creeping along they jumped into a line and created an arch for it to creep under. The creativity for games is incredible!
Eventually the caterpillar was rescued and placed on a leafy plant in the garden and closely observed by the children as he became familiar with his new home.

Excitement bubbled up again as one of the children discovered another caterpillar. Unfortunately this caterpillar had been squashed earlier. We carefully carried it to the garden and buried it in the sand.

And this is what brought tears to my eyes…

All the children unanimously put their hands together and started singing a funeral song for the caterpillar. Some giggled while others took it quite seriously. The song was finally ended with an amen and the children spirited away to begin the next adventure.

It is an incredible experience to enter the world of children’s play. As a adult this is a most privileged opportunity, not to be taken for granted.
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We’re still going strong!

This week we are proud to say that Vivienne, Kathleen and Mrs Hoza have gone to Tanzania to meet with grandmothers outside Dar Es Salaam. We look forward to all the news that they will bring with them.

Mrs Ngewu and Mrs Mavilo have been attending a St John First Aid training course this week. They say it was a lot of hard work, which included an exam. It will be of great benefit to the aftercare and the organisation to have level 2 first aid workers on hand. Well done to both of them.

Mrs Sishuba and Mrs Nkone have recently joined the aftercare team. A big welcome to them! Mrs Sishuba brings with her skills in conducting a choir and dance and Mrs Nkone is brilliant at beading and is quick to give assistance with homework. Both of them are on an office management course this week at the Volunteer Centre. We look forward the administrative tasks they will assist in in the future.

You may be wondering how we are coping with most of teachers and staff away….

Well, if there is one thing to be said for GAPA is that there is such a team spirit and readiness to assist here.

In the aftercare five grandmothers have volunteered their time and care for the week. We are so grateful to them and appreciate the wonderful job they have been doing!
From left to right:
Mrs Madzinga, Mrs Mase, Mrs Sohena, Mrs Tutu and Mrs Nkonqa.

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