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Imagine this … the realities of a winter workshop

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The Winter Workshops in Stanford – three days of workshop and an additional three mornings of books and song – have been, a tremendous success.

Day One featured bitter cold, torrential rain and (later) wind, cloud, sun, sleet and hail. Would the children come? Should we cancel the workshop?

Well, the sun shone for the twenty minutes it took the children to reach the wonderful Butterfly School where we are permitted to hold workshops when their special needs children are on holiday. The hail happened during a break when we had to call them in as they stood, open-mouthed at the first ice storm some of them had seen.

CBN children were in full force – all 47 of them - and ready for all the action we could throw at them – particularly if that included their new favourite books (The Journey trilogy by Aron Becker). Which it did.

The additional 22, or so children (our workshops are usually for 25 of them) were there because of baby-sitting problems in the school holidays. Due to our strong team of teenagers from Hermanus High, we were able to cope. Supporters included Nyasha Makwarimba, who has been working with us for over a year now (art, music, dancing, games), Jude Victor (Art), Jacques Rousseau (sports coordinator who was much admired by the participants) and Siphonyati who came to assist with music.

Adult facilitators included Vuyikasi Sizwe, Patricia *** and Lesley Beake. Our new admin manager, Claire Walker, played a strong supportive role. Everybody had fun. Everyone got home safely. Everybody danced and sang, read and was read to, created stories and illustrated them, learned new soccer skills, made masks, tie-dyed their own T-shirts and painted. We created a group story about Im-mag-in-ation (with clapping). We explored dozens of books, some of them in quiet time when the activities were paused for a rest.

Everybody had snacks on arrival and a hot, cooked lunch from OK Minimart, who gave CBN a most generous discount and went the extra mile to make sure the children were happy. We all got to love books and reading. It was a blast.

Our sincere thanks go to:

The Butterfly Centre who are so generous in allowing us to use their facilities.

OK Minimart for their wholehearted support, particularly Jennifer and *** and the manageress, Maya.

Our funders, particularly The National Lotteries, which funds the organizational support that makes CBN possible, and the Kells Family Trust, whose generous donation of 2017 still funds the workshops and toolboxes. In addition, further family donations are coming in from friends in Germany.

Hermanus High School for producing such outstanding and caring students.

Thank you all!