Christmas in South Africa

Spayathon Rheenendal_2012 03 18_1313  This will be our 2nd Christmas in Knysna and it is one of the few times we find ourselves longing to be back in Canada. We have good friends here and will spend Christmas Eve and Christmas day with some who also have no family in Knysna, but seeing many South African families enjoying a Xmas braai (BBQ) does make us long for our family and friends in Canada.


Pride (18 years old)


Daniel (19 years old)

Most of you are familiar with how we met a 14 year old youth at the side of a train in Zimbabwe 4 years ago. His father and mother died when he was 6 and 7 years old respectively and he wanted to attend a better school. Within 6 months we arranged for Pride to attend a boarding school in Zimbabwe and he will soon commence his final year of A levels.

The BIG news is that Pride is scheduled to visit us in South Africa right after Xmas. we have not seen him in 2 years and this will be his first time outside of Zimbabwe. He will be travelling with Daniel who is in the same year of high school as Pride and whose brother works in Knysna. We met Daniel last December here in Knysna and he is an equally impressive young man. Having made the 42 HOUR trip from Zimbabwe to Knysna, South Africa once before, Daniel will be able to show Pride how it is done!


Simbulele (18 years old)

3 more youth started part or full-time summer jobs this past week, including Simbulele at a car wash, Lumko as a restaurant waiter, and Wanga at a Hotel.

IMG_1555In one of our previous posts, we introduced you to Thiso (grade 9). This is where Thiso  lives with his Mother, Elizabeth.


This is the neatest shack I have ever seen, and says plenty about Thiso’s Mom. It is spotless, however the rear wall and a section of the roof leaks whenever it rains. Leaks are a common problem with informal housing or shacks. IMG_1543

While Pride and Daniel (the 2 youth from Zimbabwe) don’t know this yet, Jim has committed them to help him and Thiso waterproof the leaking wall during their visit to Knysna !!  It will be fun.

Merry Christmas everyone. Janet & Jim

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