The Awards evening for the bursaries funded by money raised by the Oddemarka School, Kristiansand, and the Haugaland College, Haugasund, was held at the newly built Perrivale Primary school in Lotus River.
The event was jointly hosted by the Principals of the seven schools that receive awards from this project and the Norwegian Liaison Committee of the Rotary Club of Wynberg. It is a project that began some 25 years ago when leaders in the Kristiansand Community and also, separately, in the Rotary Club of Kopervik collaborated with the late Are Hovstad, who was a member of the Rotary Club of Wynberg. This long-standing project, which is now much more like a relationship, has benefitted the schools and many of the learners of the schools of De Duine, Lotus River, Montagu’s Gift, Stephen Road, Perrivale, Zeekoeivlei, and Fairmont, and it is this relationship that was so clearly evident in the wonderful event of 7 March 2023.
Many of the schools’ principals had a strong relationship with Are Hovstad, who was so instrumental in getting the project going, and it was great to see their ongoing friendship with his widow, Wenche Hovstad, who was invited to hand out the certificates of award to all of the learners who were there.
It was wonderful to see the pride on the faces of not only the children but of their parents too, as they watched their children, who had been selected to represent their schools and to receive their awards.
But the thing that got our attention was the past recipients of these awards, who came back to tell their stories. There was a number who have recently matriculated and are now studying at tertiary institutions around Cape Town. There was the recipient, Kevin Jacobs, who had gone on to qualify and was now teaching at Stephen Road Primary where he had been a learner and giving back to the next generation. Donovan Nelson, who had received an award from this project a number of times while at school, both junior and high school, is now the Ward Councillor for that area. Stories such as these, that talk to the success of this project, are truly heart warming and for me the only reason required to continue these amazing relationships with such caring people so far away and so far removed from the lifestyle of the recipients, as our friends and supporters in Norway.