Zimkids Caregivers tilling the garden
TO our donors: Your generosity and support have been remarkable and deeply appreciated.
The Building Zimkids a Home; The Adrian Suskin Center for Zimkids project is moving along swiftly now. All foundations are in; the sub floor (5” quarrystone/cement mixture) is in place for the Resource Center. The remaining sub floors for the bathrooms, gazebo, Tech Center and Office cottage will be poured in the next two weeks. The walls, windows and doors of the resource center are up. Once the sub floors are all in the walls of the Tech center will go up followed by the Bathrooms. A pump and piping have been installed in the well. The water tank stand is built. Following my return December 2 the roofs will be installed. Once the roofs are up then the final floor finish is poured and the walls are skim-coated inside and out. Our six Seniors (18,19 year old orphans) are working at the site and have learned how to plan, mix and build with cement. Two of them have become so proficient that they could easily be hired by construction companies now. They in turn will be training our Elders (age 15-17).
We have been chosen to be one of eight charities for the Barnert Temple Mitzvah Mall focusing on water projects. Our plan is to install drip irrigation and to have caregivers and our children participate in the planning, implementation and care of the market garden. Once the buildings are up we will enclose a space to raise broiler chickens and egg layers. Both the market Garden and Chicken project will both feed our kids and produce some income that will move us closer to self-sufficiency.
Our security walls are up and the children are working on developing their artistic skills under the Elders direction and a local outstanding artist, Shaka Ndlovu, who is volunteering his expertise.
Sithibisiwe, 18, is one of the seniors working at the site. She is the sole caretaker of her two younger brothers. She is installing a brick path up to the buildings so that our buildings are accessible to our children and caregivers who are wheelchair bound .
We have applied for a grant to purchase computers for our Tech Center which will be used to train our kids in the use of a computer and internet. When the children are in school the tech center will become an internet café for the greater Pumula neighborhood. Again, moving us closer to self-sufficiency.
Thanks to you all of this is happening. We are all very excited and are looking forward to the grand opening sometime in March, 2012.
Resource Center under construction
Sithibisiwe preparing path for brick. Her project.
Foster, 18, laying block for the Resource Center