I recently lost my older sister, Mary Catchpole, to a long battle with cancer. She was a wonderful person with a huge heart. She threw all her faith into her Oncologist and Western Medicine. Her battle with cancer lasted for sixteen years, with continued chemo and radiation but her body finally succumbed to the disease.
I have long been aware of the effects of the body, mind and spirit on our health. What we eat, what we think and our environment effects our behaviour and ultimately will have impact on our health.
Recently, Joel Ruttenburg, who is working with kid’s ministry in an informal settlement called Jika Joe, in Pietermartizburg, in South Africa, approached the Trustees of Awesome SA, to request that his initiative come under the banner of Awesome SA. The Trustees of Awesome SA have agreed to support Joel’s initiative. Joel has named his Non Profit Organisation the Eden Kids Trust. The Eden Kids Trust will fall under the banner of Awesome SA until it has become independent and self-sustaining.
Through the Eden Kids Trust, Joel has started a competition among the kids in Jika Joe to grow vegetables. Because of Joel and his passion to make a difference in the lives of these kids, who live in extreme poverty, I felt the need to share this TED Talk with you. Have a look – Collectively we could change the face of our world.
Can you imagine your world without trees? It would be desolate and barren. You would have no oxygen to breathe or shade to cool you down. Losing touch with your family and where you come from does the same to your spirit. You feel alone
and desolate. You may be caught up in the dizziness of success but more than likely when the going gets tough, it will be your family that stands by you.
I live with a husband who is fanatical about football and I work with a man who is fanatical about football – the beautiful game.
Ask either of them about The English Premier League , Spanish LaLiga, or the European Champions League or the Orange Africa Cup of Nations being held right now on South African soil, and they will tell you anything you might want to know about the game. They’ve memorised the teams, the results, the scores, the players, the yellow cards, the coaches and the history.
So here we were, dressed in our Bafana Bafana support gear heading off to the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday. Reminiscent of 2010 – the Orange Africa Cup of Nations once again highlighted the spirit of our people. It was great to be among the throngs of South Africans singing, dancing and blowing vuvuzelas all the way into the stadium with the high hopes of Bafana Bafana winning.
Now we may not have won our way into the semi-finals yesterday but throughout the match South Africans of every social standing, culture and colour stood together behind our national team. We were not black, Indian, coloured or white – we were one people standing together as South African’s.
Once again I could not help thinking as I stood shoulder to shoulder with other South Africans that we want most to believe in ourselves. We want to stand proud with whom we are – no longer defined by colour but by whom we represent – the people of South Africa.
I stumbled across this quote in a book by Pete Goss called Close to the Wind when my children were in their teens. It is the story of a brave and compassionate man who gave up his position in a single-handed round-the-world-yacht race and turned into the teeth of a hurricane to save the life of a fellow competitor. I was so impressed with this story and the words by Theodore Roosevelt that I took the quote from the book and wrote them on cards, which I gave to my children as they left school. I told them that if they felt afraid to go out and try something, they should read these inspirational words.
In 2001 three South African supporters climbed on a plane heading for Austria, namely Guy, Di and
Candice Smith. Our middle son Paul had been selected to row in the World Under 23 Nations Cup in Linz-
Ottensheim in the men’s lightweight coxless four. The team at that time consisted of Sizwe (Lawrence)
Ndlovu, who had decided to dye his hair blonde and was fondly nick-named Top Deck – after the chocolate.
Rod MacDonald, Tony Paladin and Paul Smith and were coached by Tim Hutton. So there we were, eight
South Africans representing our country among a host of nations.