Living Social Justice

A blog about responding to poverty and injustice, everyday and in all sorts of ways

Archive for the tag “employment”

The Life-Changing Impact of TWD

It was Human Rights Day, 21 March 2013, when all across Cape Town thousands of people set out to do something different to make a difference as part of the TWD (That Was Different) challenge. It was grand, epic, crazy – and a whole lot of fun! But how has the money raised from TWD helped change lives for the better? Watch this video to find out.

Keen to start planning your TWD 2014 challenge? Visit www.thatwasdifferent.net for more info to help  you get going.

Warm Up Winter: What You Had To Say

Earlier this month, we asked you to help us Warm Up Winter by giving your good quality clothing to bless thousands of vulnerable people in Cape Town. Here’s what some of you had to say about the experience:

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The Common Ground Church youth from Frequency visited Christine Revell Children’s Home to drop off their Warm Up Winter bags

“We had a good conversation in our small group about where the clothing should go and discussed how we could give in a way that would promote relationship, be responsible and advance the Gospel. We were deciding whether to give to a partner organization or to a lady that one of our group is friendly with who lives in an informal settlement in Diep River (with the intention that she distribute items among the community). In the end, we gave to The Warehouse and the leaders and I made the suggestion that we  go as a group and visit the lady in Diep River at a later date just to build relationship with her.” – Theresa

One small group posed for a quick photo during their Warm Up Winter clothing sort

One small group poses for a quick photo during their Warm Up Winter clothing sort

“We dropped off our bags at U-turn and have decided to help a children’s home I volunteer at by providing each child with a pair of PJ’s to warm them up.  I had to take the bags to U-turn on my own as I was the only one available during work hours, but we’ve arranged to go to the children’s home on a Saturday morning with the whole group.” – Robyn

“One member of our small group went through her wardrobe and put aside many things to give away, and then a couple of days later decided that she had not been rigorous enough and went through her wardrobe again to find even more items to give away!” – Theresa

Manuela from the Constantiaberg AM congregation delivers clothes to Living Grace in Muizenberg

Manuela, from the Constantiaberg AM congregation, delivers clothes to Living Grace in Muizenberg

“We really tried to consider the dignity of the people we were giving to by sorting, folding and ironing the clothes nicely. We also prayed that these clothes would impact the lives of those who wore them and make them feel special.” – Shelley

Maegan and Emily ,from the Rondebosch PM congregation. diligently ironing the clothes before delivery

Maegan and Emily, from the Rondebosch PM congregation. diligently ironing clothes before delivery

“Last year’s campaign started to challenge me to not just give clothes that I didn’t want but also clothes which I was attached to. This year, I was even more challenged to give away some of my new stuff. After letting some of my precious ‘garments’ go, I started to experience a peace and a sense that this was obviously the right thing to do. This was a surprise as I thought that I would experience a sense of loss, or doubt as to whether it was really necessary to give away that suit. I guessed God showed me that if you are prepared to give up that which is close to you for His sake He will respond by working His Spirit in and through you.” – Nico

Getting in some play time during the Frequency clothing drop at Christine Revell Children's Home

Getting in some play time during the Frequency clothing drop at Christine Revell Children’s Home

Do you have any stories from Warm Up Winter?

P.S. How you helped Warm Up Winter (video) and How a traffic light encounter changed my idea of giving

So who is TWD going to bless?

Human Rights Day may have come and gone but that doesn’t mean the TWD journey is over.

Having raised over R250 000  for Common Good’s education and employment initiatives, the truly exciting part starts now where we get to bless our city by empowering people with job readiness training, literacy tutoring, small business mentorship, early childhood development, maths coaching and high school tutoring – to name just a few.

The Paradigm Shift graduates strike a pose with their certificates.

The Paradigm Shift graduates strike a pose with their certificates.

Over the next few months, we’re going to be posting stories of how the funds raised from TWD are being used to improve the education and employment situation in Cape Town. To find out more about some of these initiatives now, read and click on the links below:

1. NETwork is a Common Good-birthed initiative that connects the unemployed with employment opportunities and offers job readiness training to prepare people for the working world. NETwork is a hub of opportunity providing people with a resource centre from which they can search for jobs, employment placement services that benefit both employees and employers, as well as offering English courses, computer training, and hospitality/waitering classes. We think it’s a rather special place.

– Read NETwork’s latest newsletter here

Graduates of NETwork's most recent Job Readiness programme

Graduates of NETwork’s most recent Job Readiness programme

2. Through our Literacy Initiatives children at under-resourced schools are given additional support to help them improve their reading and writing. These initiatives include:

  • The Letter Club, in partnership with Kewtown Primary in Athlone
  • Reading support, in partnership with Constantia Primary
  • Bedtime reading, in partnership with Christine Revell Children’s Home

– Click here to read a volunteer’s experience of tutoring at Kewtown Primary

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3. Paradigm Shift is a programme where small business owners are given the opportunity to obtain formal business training, mentorship and discipleship. This programme specifically targets individuals who turn to entrepreneurship as a way out of poverty.

– Click here to read an article about our Paradigm Shift programme

This is just a taste of where some of the TWD funding will be going to support education and employment. Keep visiting for more stories in the coming weeks!

Handle With Care

TWD activist Amy Gatland shares her challenge experience with us –  a manicure marathon with a heart of gold!

The TWD Handle With Care team ready for manicure action

The TWD Handle With Care team ready for manicure action

On Thursday, 21 March 2013, twelve ladies set off to make some very special women feel loved and pampered as part of the That Was Different campaign. The idea, which was sparked by a popular office part time, came to life as we prepped our kits to give free manicures to elderly and vulnerable women in our area.

With the That Was Different campaign on our hearts, we were excited that our project was sure to have a double impact: to raise money for unemployment and education in our city but also to make the ladies whose nails we were painting feel beautiful and cared for. What we experienced was the humbling reality that when we give of our time and step out of our comfort zone to bless others we in turn are left feeling truly blessed. And so our project turned out to be, in fact, triple impact!

Pampering and storytelling in action at Huis Luckhoff

Pampering and storytelling in action at Huis Luckhoff

The day begun at Huis Luckhoff, a home for elderly people in Rosebank, where we arrived with our hands full of every goodie you could possibly need to give a manicure. Files, buffers, hand cream, you name it, we had it. Everything was generously donated by wonderful women in our community. The TV room was quickly transformed into a beauty parlour complete with lots of storytelling and smiles.

Later some of us moved to the sick bay to do the nails of ladies who could not get out of bed. One 94-year-old lady was so touched and said that her nails had not looked this beautiful since the war. Some of us then headed out to Sisters Incorporated, a place of safety for abused women and their children. It was so special to get to interact with these ladies and watch their faces light up at their painted nails. It’s amazing how something seemingly so simple can bring confidence and joy to a person. We had such fun painting their little girl’s nails as well.

Waiting for nails to dry while sharing stories

Huis Luckhoff ladies waiting for their nails to dry

Christine Martin summed up the day so well when she said, “With the elderly, we know that they have lived through a lot. Their stories and beautiful hands show us that they’ve lived long. But with women who have come from abusive relationships, they haven’t always lived long but they’ve lived through a lot. We all have stories to tell.”

Do you have a TWD story to tell? We’d love to hear it! Email hello@thatwasdifferent.net 🙂

TWD Raises Over R200 000!

The TWD Flash Mob caused a stir at Greenmarket Square

The TWD Flash Mob caused a stir at Greenmarket Square

On Human Rights Day, 21 March 2013, over 460 people across Cape Town all did something different to make a difference through the campaign TWD, or ‘That Was Different’. Some hiked up three peaks in one day, others dressed as superheroes and went sightseeing, while others ran, jumped, kayaked, cycled and danced. The activities, or challenges, couldn’t have been more different but the heart behind them all was the same – to help improve the situation of education and employment in South Africa.

We’ve received R228 000 through TWD and the donations are still coming in! Throughout this week we will be posting stories to this blog, but in the meantime check out the TWD Facebook page here for an album of photos from the day.

Well done to everyone who took part! And thank you for contributing to making a difference in our city 🙂

Check back in tomorrow for our first activist story.

The TWD walk from Wynberg to Fish Hoek was just one of many challenges taking place on the day...

The TWD walk from Wynberg to Fish Hoek was just one of many challenges taking place on the day…

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