A few weeks after their annual ‘Social Apprentice’ Programme, we were happy to receive news that two of the Wellington College students were coming back to sunny South Africa on holiday with their parents for Christmas. On receiving this news and the wish to spend a day with their Junior School of Excellence (JSE) buddies, we were more than happy to ensure that Rob and James could grant a Christmas wish and be reunited with their recently found buddies from South Africa, Odwa and Sinalo.
The two JSE boys were picked up early morning to spend the day with the Watters and Garvey families and the excitement was almost too much for our JSE boys as the day approached. The 22nd December finally arrived and the two groups of boys enjoyed a beautiful day together on the beaches of St Francis Bay, a coastal town situated midway between Port Elizabeth (PE) and Knysna. It was an active day filled with fun activities and memories that will be cherished forever. This was a first for Odwa and Sinalo who had never been outside of PE and certainly never had the chance to enjoy the luxury of speedboats and jet skis. The day culminated in a race on the beach which was won by Odwa and Sinalo, who were rewarded with medals in a fun ceremony at the end.
For the families, it was a great pleasure to have Odwa and Sinalo; as they expressed how well behaved the two JSE boys were. Rob and James had also been given letters and Christmas cards by their friends back home in England to pass on to their relevant South African buddies. It is great to see that the children are being pro-active in maintaining the friendships built on their tour.
We truly appreciate the effort the Watters’ and Garvey’s put in to making it possible for the boys to re-unite. The children in our programs are not fortunate enough to have such outings with their families, so it meant the world to these two boys. We hope it is a relationship that will continue into the future.
“Spending the day with my buddy was the best Christmas present ever because I thought I would never see him again. The year 2012 was a very special year to me.”- Sinalo Mazoko, JSE Beneficiary 2012