Friday, 31 August 2012

Ambassador Cheetahs bring smiles to kids in need

The ambassador cheetahs of our farm have brought smiles to thousands of learners through the years. There is no better feeling as an environmental educator than the moment when learners meet the cheetah, and their faces light up with the broadest smiles. Some of most appreciative children are those that have faced more adversities in their lives than most adults could imagine. 

Kids haven have an annual "Friends of Animals day". The shelter in situated in Benoni, and their mission is to reach out to children on the streets and others in need in our community. They strive to provide them with love and shelter in a nurturing, secure environment. Kids haven gives them guidance, therapy, training and support so that they can be the best they can be and take their rightful place in the community. Byron visited this home on 17th August as part of the Friends of Animals, and we loved allowing the children of the home to meet Byron after learning about cheetahs, and conservation.I was amazed at how well spoken knowledgeable the kids were, and I'm sure that all the little ones that are in the shelter appreciate all the hard work that the staff put in. 

On Saturday 25th Yeats, Monique and myself met amazing brave ladies at "The House" - Intombi Shelter in Berea, Johannesburg. INTOMBI SHELTER which was established in 1995 provides a temporary home for homeless girls under the age of 19, offering them safety and care for a few months, while allowing social welfare systems prepare them for future referral, or preferably, reintegration into their families. A stone's throw from Hillbrow, the sounds and sights of this neighbourhood are nothing like the serenity of the farm, or quiet of most of the schools Yeasts has visited. Despite the challenging environment, Yeats was his awesome self, and showed that even though he is still a youngster, he has got the "stuff" that makes a cheetah a legendary ambassador. Some of the girls were so impressed by how gorgeous he was, they actually wanted to give him a nice big hug :-)

If you would like to make it possible for us to visit more institutions like these, or schools that can't cover our expenses please contact me to find out how to make donations towards these visits. Alternatively, please feel free to contact the amazing staff at either of these shelters to find out how you can help these amazing kids.
Benoni Shelter Phone
+27 (0)11 421 4222

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Latest education gossip...

Cute Thank you letters

I wanted to share some of these letters from the grade 2's of Cornwall college. Thanks guys, your letters make me smile :-)


Sleet and extreme cold...

De Wildt was hit by the extreme cold that is passing over South Africa at the moment, and the animals at the farm even got their first taste of sleet!

Yeats' first big school audience

It has been an eventful few weeks, and our team is very proud of Yeats, our young ambassador cheetah. He visited Covenant college, and the learners made him feel so comfortable that he was an absolute star. We look forward to many more schools and visits with this handsome fellow.


Career week at Tswaing & Endangered Animal Expo at JHB Zoo

Over the past few weeks, the very important message about conservation and endangered animals was spread to over 1000 learners. The Tswaing Crater is part of Ditsong museums, and is a beautiful little reserve in the middle of Mabopane. Learners from as far afield as Hammanskraal were introduced to various career options in conservation, natural sciences as well as geology and astronomy. Many of the high school learners that attended this career week had no idea that so many animals in africa are endangered and in dire need of assistance. At the Endangered Animal Expo held at the Johannesburg Zoo, the primary school learners that attended were once again educated about endangered species, and some of the reasons these animals are in trouble. Jedi, our Anatolian Guard dog ambassador, was also at the zoo, and was eager to meet the learners. Many of the learners that were at the zoo are very afraid of domestic animals, therefore Jedi's calm and cuddly personality make him the perfect ambassador to introduce these little ones to animals while educating them about this amazing breed of dog.

Sponsor a cheetah visit to an underprivileged school...

It is very important that we are able to spend time in rural and underprivileged schools educating learners about the need for conservation and the role we all play in our environment. Meeting an ambassador cheetah is an unforgettable experience, and if you would like to make this possible for a school that would otherwise not afford it, please contact me to find out how you can help.

Rita Groenewald
+27 12 504 9906/7/8