When Mission Inspire hit cape town – SOUTH AFRICA – 7 days, 7 nights and 5 beautiful souls.
So, on Tuesday 13th March the mission started.
I sat waiting at Grantham train station ready to catch my train to Heathrow Airport, nervous about meeting the rest of ‘Team Inspire’. I was heading to meet 4 volunteers, 4 people I had never met before so a little scared but excited. However, I knew we were all here for the one same reason – We were on a mission to help children and young adults find their voice and teach them the tools and strategies for effective communication and unshakeable confidence.
We had been planning and organising the trip for months, but the day had come and all our hard work was finally coming together – we were on our way!! We’d had Mission Inspire T-Shirts made up with all the company sponsors logos on the back. These were the businesses that had kindly donated and supported our mission and to whom we are truly grateful!
This trip would not have happened without all your support!
We all had jumpers made with our names on them and Mission Inspire South Africa 2018 on the back.
We finally meet up at the airport, buzzing to start our trip and hit Cape Town, making friends as we walk through the airport – Warren singing as some guy was playing the piano. Everyone soon knew who we were!
So, what is Mission Inspire South Africa –
Team Inspire consisted of 5 volunteers – Warren Inspire Ryan, Dawn Evans, Caz Stapley, Lianne Clare and myself – Emma L Wilson. Together we were on a mission. MISSION INSPIRE.
The aim of our tour was to visit schools and organisations, giving workshops and talks on confidence and self-belief. We were going into some of the very poverty stricken towns within Cape Town.
Our aim – to provide children with the necessary tools and techniques to stand up for their rights to be safe, nourished, educated and to let them know they are special and that their past doesn’t determine their future.
Day 1 – Wednesday 14th March
We landed at the mother city Cape Town airport and was greeted by a very special lady called Kim Worrall. Kim lives in Cape Town and had helped us organise our trip, providing us with some valuable connections. After a long and tiring flight, we headed back to our apartment – checked in, unpacked and chilled. Shortly after we called a house meeting so we could all start discussing our week together and the organisations we were visiting each day.
In the evening we popped out for dinner and got to meet up with the lovely Kim again. Kim Worrall is the CEO of Amoyo and has been living in Cape Town for many years. She briefed us on the area, the dos and don’ts, the safety aspects etc and we all felt at such ease. – http://amoyo.org/
Day 2 – Thursday 15th March
Bush Radio station so on Thursday 15th March at 7.30am the Inspire Team went and visited Bush Radio 89.5 FM for a radio interview with radio DJ Mr Meyer.
His show was being aired to 1 million people over Western Cape Town. Warren Inspire Ryan spoke about the mission and why we were here in South Africa. The rest of the team then got a chance to speak and introduce themselves to the South Africa listeners
We were here with two fantastic boys – Dylan and Charlton, founders of an organisation called Youth Redemption. We were to collaborate with them for the next few days and they had arranged various talks and visits, this radio interview being one of them.
These boys are super special boys and are doing amazing things over in South Africa, for so many people. They run the phenomenal organisation called Youth Redemption which is a youth company/movement dedicated at changing the mindset of young people all over South Africa (Youth Between the ages of 16 – 24) in order for them to make positive life choices concerning their future. For more information on this – https://www.facebook.com/youthredemption/
After the radio interview, we jumped back in the car and headed to our next place – Zonnebloem High School. The children were amazing! They loved chatting with us all and listening to our story’s.
Our next stop was Garden Commercial High School where Warren and Dawn did an incredible workshop to over 400 children. Wow! You should have seen the kids sitting on the edge of their seats listening to each and every word they were both saying. When Warren talks, let me just tell you, he sure knows how to talk to the children to entertain them. He edutains! Educates and entertains at the same time! The kids are just so excited, joining in with him as he speaks, wanting to hear more and more
We then went along with the guys from Youth Redemption to hand out shoes, trainers & food to homeless families living out on the waste land
Dylan and Charlton run a few different projects, their main one being Kick Game Grind which is handing out new shoes to the less fortunate/those in need. They also run the Fresher Than You Project (collecting toiletries and handing them out to the less fortunate or those in need).
Day 3 – Friday 16th March
On Friday we went to Cape Town College. The students here were a little older than the kids at the other places we had been going to. They were a little harder to loosen up than the younger ones.They were all a little bit shy when we first arrived but after Warren did a few of his usual ‘tricks’ to engage the audience they soon started to join in and open up. By the end of the workshop they were loving it and he had most of them up standing by his side. Also, Myself, Lianne, Caz and Dawn all spoke here and shared our experience so far with what we have been doing. Lianne, Caz and I hadn’t really spoken much in front of crowds so it was a great experience for us all and pushed us out of our comfort zones.
After the school, Dylan & Charlton took us back to the homeless where we got to deliver them lots of toiletries and chat with them on how they ended up on the streets.
The boys then took us off to the Park and the seaside where they had arranged for us to have a photo shoot to document our collaboration. We got some brilliant photos – as you will see below, they really captured the moment.
Day 4 – Saturday 17th March
Saturday we were at the Amoyo Performing Arts Foundation. Such a special day spending time with all these amazing children and such a powerful talk also from Warren inspire Ryan.
Amoyo is so much more than just a performing arts training programme. Their classes are a platform to engage with the youth, to show them they care, and are here to support and help them develop into successful, employable adults. The Amoyo journey aligns skill development with self-respect, respect for others, integrity, emotional intelligence and communication skills needed to survive in the fast-paced professional world outside of their immediate environment of poverty, neglect, criminal and gang activity.
The children here have so much love to give and I loved our day here so much. Kim is doing such an amazing job and to see how much the children care for her and she cares for them is so heart-warming. She even makes sure all the kids parents join in and become part of the children’s lives more, you can see what she is doing here is changing so many lives.
‘Amoyo’s MISSION is to uplift the communities of Imizamo Yethu and Hangberg, one child at a time, through an after-school and holiday programme offering high-quality dance, drama, music and performance classes.’
With every new dance step learnt, with every new drama skill acquired, with positive feedback each and every day, children blossom in ways that might seem unfathomable to many” says Kim. (CO-FOUNDER, SEO & DRAMA TEACHER)
EMERGENCY HELP NEEDED: Many of our Amoyo children have lost their homes and one entire family has died in a huge fire sweeping through the township where Amoyo is based. If you would like to help by donating anything to support these families. Please use reference FIRE. HUNDREDS of people have lost everything. Please see all payment options on www.amoyo.org thank you for caring.
Day 5 – Sunday 18th March
Today a few of the guys wanted to climb Table Mountain, so off we went! I don’t think we realised how hard it was going to be – 4 hours later and we made it to the top.
The journey up there was a mission let me tell you! We had lots of stops on the way up, the heat beating down on us. One of the girls fell ill but was halfway there so no point turning back.
It was a mission that once you had started you wanted to finish! It was so worthwhile when we made it to the TOP!
It was such an achievement. But our climb was made even more special as we got to join Andrew Patterson – Renaissance Guy on his 77th climb. Andrew is raising money over in South Africa for many charity’s and is climbing the mountain each day, sometimes more than once a day, for 365 days to raise money for all these charities. It was a true honour to meet him and share this experience with him.
Day 6 – Monday 19th March
Today a few of the gang woke up not feeling too good, including myself. We had planned to all go to Pebbles Project for the day. Pebbles Project is a non-profit organization. They enrich the lives of disadvantaged children and families in the Winelands farming communities in the Western Cape. They focus on the entire life of the child and the challenging circumstances in which they live in order to make a significant and lasting difference.
We were meant to spend the full day there helping paint all the fences.However, as we weren’t feeling too good just three of us popped in there for the morning. We had a look round the facilities and got to meet some of the kids.
However, as we weren’t feeling too good just three of us popped in there for the morning. We had a look round the facilities and got to meet some of the kids.
Day 7 – Tuesday 20th March
On the last day we visited Salesian Institute – the Salesian Institute Youth Projects works in youth education and skills development, changing the lives of vulnerable children and youth-at-risk in and around Cape Town, South Africa. They offer support, life skills, and vocational training.
We got to meet the children where they sang us all a song, then Warren did a little workshop with them. We all did a small talk and told them our passion and dreams. We then went for a meeting with the CEO where he shared all the history and the background of the company and what their aim was.
The Salesian Institute serves vulnerable children and youth at risk regardless of religion, race, gender or nationality.
We give them the skills they need to stay out of danger, find good jobs and lead happy lives. Each year we do this for the many young men and women in our programmes with a custom-tailored mix of basic education, vocational training, social skills, and neighbourhood outreach.’
If you would like to read more about this, please check out their webpage – ttps://salesianyouth.org/
Day 8 – Wednesday 22th March
The end was near, our last day! What an experience and busy 8 days we have had. In the morning we got packed up ready for the off. The Youth Redemption boys and Kim Worrall came over to see us all off. We did a Facebook live with all, talking about the experience of the whole week.
We headed for the airport but on the way we took the beautiful scenic route across Chapmans Peak, we stopped at the top to take some photos with the breath-taking views and mountain behind us
The scenic route of Chapmans Peak Road takes you along the water past Hout Bay Harbour and Boulders Beach, with its resident African penguins, how cute were the African penguins!! I just wanted to bring one home with me … lol. Not sure that would go down well though. But so glad we got to stop and see these on the way back. They were just wandering around on the beach. People were sunbathing, the kids were playing all whilst the penguins were swimming past them. It was all a bit mad! But so nice to see, the kids were loving them, as were we. Then it was time to grab some lunch, our last lunch together in South Africa and head to the airport.
Thanks to Jade our driver/security who was more than a driver, he was a lovable kind man who became part of our family, a man never to be forgotten. Thanks for being you.
I just want to say – HUGE thanks to all my friends and family for donating towards this mission. All the companies who sponsored us. None of this could have gone ahead without you! So, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Also, thanks so much to the Youth Redemption boys and Kim Worrall the CEO of Amoyo, I will cherish my memories of this trip for life.
Goodbye CAPE TOWN we shall miss you. I was an incredible week. Thank you to everyone for everything you did in South Africa and to all Team Inspire for making this mission possible and the new friends I made for life. Love you all