A Look Back

A Look Back

Less than a year ago, Sinani underwent a relaunch. We laid out our vision and we are now blown away at how things have progressed this year! On August 30th we held our annual feedback meeting. Please take a few minutes to see what the Lord Has Done...

Sinani Feedback Summary

“Come and See What the Lord Has Done”

31, August 2018

In case you missed the Annual Sinani Update on 30 August, at Church Unlimited - Nelspruit, we would like to update you on what you missed…

Here is one person’s account that we all know.

“The Sinani annual report-back evening was breathtaking. The miracles, salvations and stories of restoration we heard made us think we were dreaming. The people of CU have risen and are shining in the community for our King. Wonderful, wonderful. Well done Team Sinani”

 ~ Alan Parfitt

There were approximately 60 people present and the common theme was “team” and how much of a privilege it is to come along side of what God was doing. So far in 2018, team and recognizing where God is working has allowed for some amazing things to happen. As Chris Hayes, our Sinani Field Coordinator put it; “there’s no words to describe the things I’ve seen God doing.” There were no less that seventeen notable highlights followed up by personal testimonies of eight volunteers and people who went on outreaches with us. Below are some of the highlights that were presented by Craig Rebro.

Web Site Launch

Up until this year, Sinani was simply linked to C.U. Nelspruit’s web site with a page within that site. www.sinani.org  has allowed us to relaunch with tools to help us advocate, inform and provide a safe place to donate resources for the important work we are doing. It has an active News Tab, which can keep people updated on important events as well as telling the Sinani story of who we are and what we do. If you haven’t seen it yet, please check it out.

Social Media

Another way we’ve been advocating for the poor and vulnerable has been through our Facebook page and Instagram site. “Sinaniunlimited” is how to find us in both places and examples of what we post on a weekly basis were showcased. If you are into social media, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Instagram.

Sinani Team

We really only started our ‘full on’ Sinani relaunch efforts in February of 2018 but God has gone before us in many ways. One of those ways was by blessing us with a talented newly married couple. Devon and Lerato Van Hoffen have been with us since June and have been a huge help in allowing the team to multi task. They’ve served as a relief valve for day to day operations in many ways. Devon is from Canada and serves primarily under the Sinani, Foundations for Farming initiative while Lerato is South African and has been working closely with Brenda Rebro in many of the projects every week. Our team continues to grow. We now have five fulltime staff and volunteers (4 of which are being supported by their churches in Canada and the US), two part-time volunteers, nine active board members and several volunteers who are available on an as-needed basis. This isn’t including those who have participated in outreach opportunities or those who have been inquiring to get involved on a weekly basis!

Corporate Identity “C.I.”

We realize Sinani is a ministry but we also know it’s wise to define who you are both visually and contextually. We launched some of those tools on the big screen and had them on the tables for people to view. These tools are very handy in our communities to ensure we are aligned and in agreement with the direction we are headed. They are also extremely helpful when presenting to other organizations. If you go to our web site you will see them there.

Community Projects Added

We’ve added four new communities since our last update meeting:

  • Oakley Hope Centre, Hazyview
  • Melalane Hope Centre, Melalane
  • Disabled Centre, Tekatakho
  • Mataffin Hope Centre, Mataffin

2nd Annual Zwel Kids Challenge 

On Saturday, 9 June as the sun began to rise on a crisp lowveld morning, mountain bike enthusiasts and good-hearted people gathered at the Crossings Centre in front of Mopani Pharmacy and the Sasol garage in White River for a good cause. Everyone soon made their way about 30 minutes east towards the township of Zwelisha. Hot drinks were ready for the volunteers and riders who made it to the destination of Zwelisha Primary School.  

Only 25 minutes out of Nelspruit, many had never been to this community. They were met with smiles and for the young riders participating from the community, there was excitement in their eyes. Riders had the option of doing a 18km route or a 36km route. The purpose of the race was to support the Zwel Kids Club which had over 30 of their own members participating. The soccer pitch was full of cars from cyclists who came out to support the event. An impromptu warm up began with over 100 cyclists riding around in a large circle with smiles and laughter. It was a wonderful coming together of all different ages and backgrounds.  

Sinani was chosen as GEMS 2018 CSI project – GEMS MEDIA RELEASE

“We came to hear about Angel’s work from our GEMS Client Liaison Office in Nelspruit, and we were so touched and inspired by this project that we have decided to make the Umalusi Omuhle Drop-In n Centre the beneficiary of GEMS corporate social investment project for the year,” explains Dr Guni Goolab, Principal Officer of GEMS.

“Education and nutrition are important foundations for building a better life, and Angel has put considerable time and energy into helping children to grow their potential. For those from child-headed households, Angel and her team provide adult guidance and support that encourages these young people to never lose hope as they reach for a more prosperous future,” Dr Goolab notes. “This community-based initiative is making a positive contribution in an area that is home to many GEMS members and their families and is part of the social fabric that is the backbone of the community. It is our privilege to support Angel’s work so that the Umalusi Omuhle Drop -Inn Centre can do more to support the holistic wellness of the children it serves.

GEMS donated building materials for the construction of an extension to the Umalusi Omuhle Drop-In n Centre, which will include a life skills area, covered open-plan area, crèche, office, storeroom, sickbay and kitchen. Fencing, as well as rainwater tanks and water pumps were also donated to ensure availability of water because the centre is not connected to bulk services. The construction began in June this year and it is anticipated that the building will be completed in September, depending on weather conditions.

Additional Highlights

We are very excited about all the momentum Sinani is experiencing. In order to condense the nights events - here are a few more bullet pointed items that were presented:

  • Sinani will be featured in the next Get It magazine
  • We are working on starting a second bicycle club in Mataffin
  • We are finalist in the Community Category of the 2018 KLCBT – Kruger Lowveld Chamber Business & Tourisam Annual Awards. 
  • We are in the planning stages of our second Life Centre
  • 4 fully operational FfF gardens supplementing Life Centres feeding programs
  • Many successful training Initiatives
  • Sports Ministry Day with over 150 children in Msholozi
  • Growing partnerships with many local businesses & organizations
  • Ukuthunga handmade making huge strides! Juliana Walters updated us on their great success.
  • Most importantly, King & Kingdom are being glorified!

Finances

Chairman, John Willcocks gave us a financial snapshot from last year to this year. The summation is that our monthly expenditures are approximately R100 000 and we are bringing in just over that on a monthly basis. Although this is good news and we’ve experienced a lot of growth financially, it doesn’t leave room for additional projects, new communities or growth in our team. We have projects that are not 100% covered yet as it relates to feeding the children. We are very grateful for the position we are in but are trusting that through the generosity of God’s people, we can continue to change lives through this ministry. In short, we can still use significant financial support to come along side what God is doing.

From the Field

At a glance, we heard from board member - Thobile Simelane describing her time in Oshoek and Teka Tako. She made mention of how important the work we do is because of the tears she shed while visiting both communities. Karen Steyn gave a beautiful testimony about her experience in being obedient “to go” to Malawi and how amazing the trip was. Matt Lankers explained the process and progress that has been occurring with the Life Centre in Dwaleni and that we are in the final stages before completion. Mel Jackaman & Simone Schroeder gave us their volunteer perspective of what it’s meant to them to start volunteering with Sinani and how they are looking forward to what is to come.

Chris Hayes spoke about the blessing of being a part of a ministry that is through the church and that we must be spirit filled, otherwise it is simply dead works. Devon & Lerato Van Hoffen both spoke about how they prayed for people and what happened after they accepted Christ… that they were truly new creations, totally different people. Johan & Frieda Grobler - Foundations for Farming champs gave a great account of how working onto the Lord produces amazing results in many ways. There was even a video of Johan’s baptism that took place on the recent visit with C.U. and Hands at Work to Maonde, Malawi.

What’s Next

  1. Brenda Rebro asked for volunteers to help out in Msholozi for the next six weeks. The need is for a few hours on Friday afternoons to help out with the children there.
  2. We were reminded of the need for mobile clinics and to build our team of Sinani Health volunteers. We’re looking for people in the health profession who will be willing to be a part of a larger team that donates their time and talent on a rotating basis. Our dream is to have one mobile clinic every month in one of our communities.
  3. We have a project in need of a sponsor for a community called Tekatakho Disabled Centre. They care for 50 mentally and physically challenged kids and young adults. Foundations for Farming is willing to put on a training there and assist them to get up and running. What we are in need of is to secure the area where the very vulnerable children will be practicing gardening as to help them with a skill, give them dignity as well as help provide food for the care centre. The area is not safe so we would like to hide them in plain sight and provide privacy for the people who will be caring for the kids as well as the children themselves. Here is a breakdown of the proposal:

Tekatakho Proposal Breakdown

Wall Height: 1.8m

Bricks Needed: 3000 Est. Cost: R26 400

Sand: 3 Loads: Est. Cost: R2 550

Stone: 2 Loads: Est Cost: R3 100

Delivery of stone: R1 000

Cement: 120 bags: R9 118

Brickforce: 20 rolls: R600

Water Hook Up: R7 200

Seedlings, fertilizer: R2 032

Labour Est: R34 000 if paying a community builder

Total:   R86 000 ($8600 USD)

(estimated total if labour is donated: R52 000 - $5200 USD)

 

Our next big event: “Sinani Summit”

This is a follow up to our first leadership conference held back in April which has given us a spring board into many of the goings on that were part of the update. Since the first conference was such a success, we feel it would be wise to continue that momentum.

When: 11 – 13 October

Where: Church Unlimited Nelspruit & Mbombela Stadium (Ready Set Go – Sports Ministry)

Who: 70 of our community leaders related to our projects as well as volunteers needed

How can you help? We need host families for the projects that are farther away. This worked out well in April and it was a way for C.U. members to practice hospitality but everyone was blessed mightily in return. Your responsibility is to fetch your hosted participant(s) & provide them a place to sleep. Then get them back to the conference in the morning. We will feed them, so it’s only those two things. You can also volunteer to be a part of the conference as a volunteer. Simply email: connect@sinani.org

 

Closing Remarks

Co-Founder of Sinani - Rob Gibbs gave a beautiful brief history of the original vision to what Sinani has become. He reminded us of the theme that seemed to have made its signature on the night about seeing where God is at work and coming along side of Him. He did that with the following scripture:

Proverbs 29:18 The Message (MSG)

If people can’t see what God is doing,
    they stumble all over themselves;
But when they attend to what he reveals,
    they are most blessed.

We want to thank everyone who has raised their hand to be involved with Sinani and are so encouraged by the testimonies that have come from that obedience. We look forward to many more of them in the future!

Warm Blessings!

Team Sinani