Teachers and learners from Liepzig Primary School, staff from Esselen Park Library and the Thompson sisters from Susters4Life, shared a meal and a cooldrink together after the learners each received a warm beanie and gloves as part of Mandela Day celebrations last week.
Learners from Leipzig and Nuystasie NGK primary schools in the Nuy Valley were thrilled to each receive a warm beanie and gloves from NGO Susters4Life, and were treated to a meal and a cooldrink. This gift will assist the children to keep warm during their long walks to and from school and formed part of the Susters4Life Mandela Day celebrations.
Principal of Nuystasie Primary Chandler Le Roux said: “This donation is deeply appreciated and will make a big difference to our learners during these cold months.”
Renee Thompson, co-founder of Susters4Life, said to the learners: “We are privileged to spend our 67 minutes for Mandela here with you today. What makes it more special this year is that Madiba would have turned 100 years old, and both education and children had a very special place in Tata’s heart.”
Susters4Life was started by the four Thompson sisters of Worcester, when their mother, who had raised them as a single mother after their father was murdered, died of pancreatic cancer. In the time after her death they became more aware of just how much their mother had done for them despite the many difficulties she faced in raising four daughters.
They started with adhoc community projects in Worcester, as well as in Laingsburg where their mother was born and where their grandmother still lives. All of this was funded from their own pockets and through the generosity of friends, and after experiencing first-hand just how much need there is for women to receive guidance, mentorship and support, especially where poverty and abuse are factors, they moved to formalize their structure, and Susters4Life was registered as an NGO last year.
The sisters are Lesley Thompson (an event manager and florist in Worcester and Cape Town), Renee Thompson (lives in Cape Town but commutes regularly to the family home in Worcester, while doing her PHD and establishing her consultancy, the Thompson Trust), Toni Thompson (librarian at Esselen Park), and Nashreen Thompson (works at Susters4Life).
“We were raised by a strong mother, and I am grateful for the opportunities I have had as a result of my mother’s determination and vision for us. We want to inspire and support the women and children in our communities to have a vision for their own futures, and see what is possible,” said Renee Thompson.