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Dear Friends,

Imbali Western Cape was once again very prominent in its participation in the e’Bosch Heritage Project’s activities during September, Heritage Month. The e’Bosch Heritage Project aims to create a new heritage to include all the communities in the Stellenbosch area, and at the same time to encourage indigenous, cultural activities in each of the surrounding ten communities (called dorpies). Involved in the e’Bosch project for the last three years, Imbali this year presented the following events in Kylemore:

Fun with Fynbos: Flower demonstration and Pensioners’ Tea

A glorious explosion in a fynbos landscape was experienced by the pensioners of Kylemore on Friday 22 September, when Marjolijn Malan and her delightful granddaughter, Lara Malan (4) presented a world-class flower arrangement demonstration at the VG Kerk hall.
With deft hands, Marjolijn used reeds, strips of wood, creepers, proteas - the whole gamut of fynbos – to create magnificent installations that varied from jasmine trailing down from swings to a cone of wooden strips, decorated with proteas – a spring Christmas tree! All the while, little Lara participated in the demonstration in her endearing way, now chatting with the audience and then with her grandmother, and arranging flowers in her smaller version of a Christmas tree.

The variety of ideas and vegetation was breath-taking, and the audience gasped in amazement as Marjolijn, like an expert magician, continued to pull a new arrangement technique out of her hat. She just made it all seem so easy, far too easy, but there were many practical tips and ideas for the audience to experiment with at home, without spending a fortune on flowers. It was truly an inspiring, fun-filled morning for the pensioners, with lots of laughter at Lara’s antics and tasty eats provided by Imbali.

Eva Williams welcomed the pensioners on behalf of Imbali and also thanked Marjolijn for her contribution to heritage, and natural heritage in particular, with her inspiring flower arrangements.

Thanks also to Cino Gironi of OZFlora, specialised trader of South African flowers, for once again generously donating fynbos.

Imbali Child Art Exhibition

On Saturday 23 September, Imbali had another treat for the community of Kylemore – their annual child art exhibition.
This exhibition, always of a very high standard, for the first time included work by children of Frank Heaven’s Crèche in Kylemore. This project has been made possible by Imbali receiving R450,000 from the National Lottery Commission to be used for visual literacy art tuition for these learners.

It was most rewarding to see the works of these tiny tots and to see how receptive they are to the wonderful, inspiring tuition of Alexis Hanslo, who until now had managed and coordinated the monthly art class at the Fredagh and Bernard Podlashuk Art Centre in association with an OUTREACH PROGRAMME brought through teachers from the Children’s Art Centre, Zonnebloem for the last 18 years.

The Imbali art exhibition was opened by Nelis Koegelenberg, artist and principal of the PJ Olivier Art Centre. He gave an inspiring talk to the young artists, who were also competing in a chess tournament presented by Impact through Sport, at the centre that morning. The exhibition was very well attended, with many proud parents coming to see what their offspring had been up to during the past year. Nelis was especially impressed by the work done by the learners of the Frank’s Heaven Crèche of Child Welfare SA: Stellenbosch and was especially inspired by their fresh approach and freedom of expression.
Nine young Kylemore artists that attended the monthly art class at the local art centre have also been elected to study at the PJ Olivier Art Centre for a year. Their tuition fees are also covered by the donation given to Imbali by the National Lottery.

Imbali’s muffin donation to e’Bosch School Choir Festival

Imbali again donated 1000 muffins to more than 800 learners joined in the e’Bosch Choral Festival. High school learners gathered together on two Saturdays to sing along and to get to know each other better.

These two meetings certainly bore fruit as these students delivered a wonderful concert on Tuesday 19 September in the Bloemhof Girls’ High School hall, which was extremely well attended. To see 500 learners on the stage at the same time, all singing together, was a heart-warming experience! To see how easily they communicated and listen to them singing Zander Potgieter’s (choir master of Stellenbosch High School) e’Bosch song, brought tears to the eyes of the audience.

Altogether 14 primary schools participated in the concert which was held in the Stellenbosch Town hall on Friday 22 September. School after school rendered their two songs, and were cheered on by proud parents and friends.

This is the flagship event of the e’Bosch Heritage Project and strives to create a new combined heritage for the future generations of Stellenbosch. Imbali is proud to contribute, in our special albeit small way, to this very important and very successful project to build a new heritage together.
We are truly grateful to Imbali’s Jeanne Bestbier-Bloch, Eva Williams and Alexis Hanslo and all their helpers and other volunteers, as well as Marjolijn Malan, for their wonderful contributions to this year’s e’Bosch events in Kylemore.

Elsabe Retief
Imbali Committee Member
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