2011 Izulu Orphan Projects Christmas Party - Get Involved!

Hi everyone

With 38 days to go, I really need to get this letter to all of you. It amazes me how nervous I get every year before I send this email, this is such a commitment that is completely out of my hands. But this will be our 10th party and every year it just keeps getting better and better, and no doubt bigger too! This year we will be catering for 3 000 orphans and carers. I can't believe it myself!

Our numbers at the beginning of the year increased to 512 orphaned families that we support. And this Christmas party is the absolute highlight for these children, and for everyone else involved! What amazes me the most is that all we have right now is 100 small soft toy zebras, which were donated this last weekend from the 2003 Cricket World Cup souvenirs that never sold. And I know by the time of the party, everything always comes together so perfectly. I really want to thank all of you for the life-giving support over the years as there is no ways any of this incredible work could happen without you.

Our party, or parties I should say, will happen over 3 days this year to properly cater for everyone. We will be having 1 000 orphans and carers each day. Over the years we have learnt how to get the most out of these events as it is the time when we really get to see all the children. The main thing we use this party for is to collect all the orphans school reports, that is their ticket to enter the party, and to update all their school information for 2012. There is a big registration process and big admin teams running in the background of the party. There are also food teams, party pack teams, and the super lucky teams that get to hand out the presents to the children! This gives you a good idea of the organization and help that needs to go into these special events. The biggest request that I have is for volunteers on the days.

The more hands we have, the more organized and fun it is for everyone.

This is our one and only fundraiser of the year. There is no other time during the year in-between building orphans houses, getting the orphans into schools and educated, running food programs and building vegetable gardens to spend time raising funds. I use to do it while Chadd was alive but now there is really is just no time. We have survived purely on the kindness of people hearing about us and helping completely out of the kindness of their hearts. I am so eternally grateful! The way people have encouraged us over the last two years has been litterally life-changing for thousands. With the funds left over from the party, we use to buy the uniforms for our orphans at the beginning of the school year, who would otherwise not be going to school. At the beginning of this year we bought uniforms for 472 orphans totaling R160 000.

Our party will be held on the 16th, 17th and 18th of December, a thousand each day. It is a bit later this year but it works well falling on the public holiday and weekend. We have loads of beds here and volunteers are welcomed to stay over. We end up braai-ing, barbecuing, in the evenings and it is very festive as we sort out presents and discuss each days highlights. And I must also mention having to make 6000 hotdogs!

We use the same format every year as it works well:

  • 08h00 - 09h00: Volunteers arrive and register and get to work
  • 10h00 - 11h00: Busses arrive and orphan registration
  • 11h00 - 12h30: The meaning of Christmas and entertainment
  • 12h30 - 14h30: Handing out of food and presents
  • 14h30 - 15h00: Busses take orphans home and volunteers clean up.
  • 15h00 - onwards: Volunteers relax, swim and prepare for next day.

As i said, we we only have 100 Soft toys and we like to give each child a gift, the only one most of them get the whole year:

Ages Boys Girls
1 - 6 100 100
7 - 14 600 600
15 + 500 500

Over the last 3 years we have been able to spoil the wonderful grandmothers with a gift. When they get these they act even more delighted then the children as they dance around with thanks :-). We have about 550 carers that we would like to spoil.

We have also learnt to do food packs as they are easier to hand out to the thousands. In it we put 2 hot dogs, a juice and a party pack.

  • Rolls: 6000
  • Viennas: 6000
  • Tomato Sauce: The amount I have no idea, never made 6000 hot dogs before!!!
  • Juice: 3000
  • Our biggest expense is the busses we hire to collect all these old grandmothers and orphans. We cover 1200 square metres and most of them live to far to walk for the party. We would like to hire 5 busses a day at R2 400 per bus. In total that will be R 36 000.

Wow, I'm still a bit nervous. This is such a huge event and there are so few of us here. We really need one and all to come to the party :-) Every one of you makes a huge difference. I have also learnt to save time to include our banking details, thank-you so much:

  • First National Bank

  • Empangeni

  • 8 Smith Street

  • Account Name: Izulu Orphan Projects

  • Account Type: Cheque Account (Non-Profit)

  • Account No: 62094657908

  • Branch Code: 220130

  • BIC/Swift address: FIRNZAJJXXX

If anyone has any enquiries, please do not hesitate to contact me on 083 649 9990. My mother is in Durban and will collect and store anything for me. Her name is Heather and her number is 031-207 4958 or 082 779 3443, thanks mom :-).

From myself and my whole team we want to wish you an amazingly blessed Christmas. Take time to relax and enjoy your families. Every moment we have is precious so make the most of it.

Kindest regards

Kate Bain