Solving Social Problems facing Clarenites

14 January it is. Just before 9am a number of cars queued outside Margaret’s residence. A number of mature men and one lady, Pat Wagner made their way into the yard, straight to the sitting room. As a social player, the coordinator of Phaphama Youth Development, I found myself in the meeting, where almost everyone else qualifies to be my parent. What is this all about? Solving the issues that affect Clarenites is what the hearts of these mature men and women beat for, I can testify. For about an hour and a half the ten of us deliberated on ways of solving social issues, both ongoing and future plans.

Social Concerns is a wheel inside the Combined Churches In Action (CCIA) wheel. CCIA is an umbrella organisation that focuses on helping the needy holistically. Social Concerns is the arm that deals with issues that affect families and individuals, coming up with solutions that help individuals become self-sustaining. It works hand in hand with the Social Workers from the Department of Social Development and the South African Police Service. A Social Auxilliary Worker has also been appointed and she will be starting work on 1 February 2016. She will be based at Tsepong.

Social Concerns has in the past helped children with parents from Lesotho gain access to South African schools. It has also helped people who need counselling, helping them find meaning in life. In every situation where this arm gets involved, the aim is to leave a situation completely solved.

For some time now Social Concerns has been pushing to have a Safe Haven established, and relenting is not being put as an option. A Safe Haven, once established will be a place where people in danger of emotional damage or with no place to stay can be housed temporarily, while working out a permanent solution to the challenge.

Any challenge can be harnessed, when like minded people of great capacity bring their efforts together. This is the platform that Social Concerns has created. You can play a part in this. We can put our resources and knowledge together to improve the sanity level in our community.

To be part of the solution, visit Tshepong in Kgubetswana during office hours.

Onward 2Posted by Onward Mvurume

January 2016

Support a Notable Cause in 2016

I am excited to start the year with an article on some work that is focused on changing lives and establishing humanity in dominance and destiny mustering.

Bethel Christian fellowship is a church that has been in existence in Kgubetswana since 24 October 2011. The church focuses on building communities ruled by love. It also emphasises the importance of family values, where a family is made up of a father, mother and children; all staying together in harmony.

Since its birth, Bethel has hosted five international conferences, four of them under the brand TTiG, which stands for Total Trust in God. The TTiG conferences have become a typical pilgrimage, with participants coming from as far as Virginia, Potchefstroom, Klerksdorp, Johannesburg, and Zimbabwe.

Last year’s TTiG conference was held from 7 October to 11 October at Kgubetswana Community Hall. Restaurant owners, shop oowners and lodges benefited from the traffic that came, just for TTiG. The church is thus benefiting the business sector also, in Clarens.

Bethel is growing and the founding pastor, Tawanda Muviyi has written the letter below, as the church focuses on making more impact in the community:

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Our ministry has been moving from glory to glory since its inception in October 2011, growing slowly in terms of numbers but significantly fast spiritually. We have gone through challenges but our God has proven bigger than all of them, we came out victorious.
For some time now we have been based on a temporary premise inside one of the congregant’s property, a 7m X 4.5m structure often very hot in summer and very cold in winter. By God’s grace we have just acquired an empty stand (65 Kgubetswana) where we can build a more suitable structure. Our intention therefore is to build such structure that will be able to accommodate the church as well as a day care centre/preschool for children.

The structure will be a 15m X 9m with a steel framework covered with wooden boards and roofed with zinc sheets. We have a few zinc sheets that we bought last year that will cover a third of the roof as well as some steel poles.

We are therefore extending an invitation to friends and partners of Bethel Christian Fellowship (and those that desire to be part of what God is doing) to contribute as the Spirit leads to the accomplishment of this vision. You are welcome to pay money directly to our suppliers for easy accountability, or give in kind should you have any of the listed items. Please note that we appreciate even used things such as steel poles, zinc sheets, wood etc.

Yours in Christ

Tawanda Muviyi
084 339 4340

OnwardPosted by Onward Blessing Mvurume

Clarens News: 9th January, 2016

Reconciliation Day – Building Bridges


Clarens News's photo.

Having been involved in political activism, social activism and evangelism, I can safely and simply say, “human beings act from preconceived perspectives!” In politics, many party cadres become dogmatic at some point and will not be able to accept any other ideology. In evangelism you also meet people who have beliefs that they are not willing to give up, only because ‘they have been passed to them by the elders’. As we work to develop Clarens greater work needs to be done to develop mental faculties, if not to replace some corrupt files.

We are coming from a point where black and white are not only races, but they are messages written in block letters. Some blacks see a white person as someone who looks down upon the black race. They see an oppressor, an enemy to black development and empowerment. On the other side, some whites see a black person as an incapacitated member of the community, no matter how qualified and experienced they may be. They see a spoilt folk suffering from an entitlement syndrome. If it is in business there is rarely uniformity in what a different race expects to pay or to be paid for services rendered. What is wrong in our society? How can we correct it? How can a fair playground be constructed?

We are striving to distribute news, telling it as it is. Mental structures that need renovation are supplied with the right tools, manpower and materials. Not all work requires the same tool kit and manpower. You cannot use a wheelbarrow to cut a tree branch. I am not going to call everything that barks a dog here; very often we find sheep and cattle grazing together. Weeds also want to grow where good seeds have been sown. Not everything that is done in this community, by different races is wrong. There are men and women who are doing great works across the colour boundaries. I can mention some members of our community without reservations from my short experience in Clarens. People like Ollie, the guy who runs Clarens Xtreme has managed to excel in this vein. Mawela Mashinini who runs Fair Brothers Security among other businesses is also a figure that cannot be ignored. Gareth, the pastor of Dihlabeng Christian Church is another exemplary figure.

With tourists coming to our town daily and major world-class events finding Clarens to be ‘the place’, we have a lot to do as a combined force. Our difference in colour should not be a threat to our coexistence but an opportunity for us to serve our market well. Differences can be positively viewed as diversity, which is a precious component of any ecosystem. Let us not create a dog-eat-dog community. Business competition should be sanitized, merit overpowering colour. No activity or event should go unnoticed. Turning a blind eye to what is happening to our nose will only produce a disjointed, sickly community.

I want to encourage you to keep your eye on our events page and get to know what is happening around you. Normally giant opportunities do not use a speaker to announce themselves. The gold is in the dirt, great deals are hidden in the small font. Clarens is the place, great opportunities are around us. Let us work in unison to produce and offer the best to our clients.

The picture below is an extract from the prayer for Matriculants that was held at NG Kerk on 23 October 2015.

OnwardArticle by Onward Blessing Mvurume

Nnete Foundation: Multi-Dimentsional Truth Display

NNETE FOUNDATION, Multi-Dimensional Truth Display

“Can I meet you the week after next week?” That is all Gareth Oosthuyzen asked for. It was early May 2015 and I had posted on my Facebook wall that I was going to start teaching Maths in Clarens, and Gareth had read it. About a week and a half later we were seated in my rented room and the term Nnete Foundation was introduced to my ears.
After the greetings and catching up after our first meeting six months earlier, we got to business. We discussed the Mr Onward Maths Academy idea, then the Nnete aspect. By then, Nnete was like a two months old pregnancy, only those very close to the pregnant lady would know. The premise to be used did not look like it could be a hope for many. A shop, it was from afar and from a close range. Reality was just a zygote.

It’s been over seven months now and birth pangs can be felt. The water is about to break. The midwives are attentive.
Nnete Foundation is a Non-Profit Organisation that is being established in Clarens. The place that used to be the Dihlabeng Store is becoming a place of academic upliftment and life skills development. The mandate for this work is to put Clarens on the map academically and knowledgewise. Nnete is a Sesotho term that means truth. From my discussion with Gareth, truth is going to be dished in basins. A world-class set up is on the cards. Grade 8 and Grade 9 learners from schools around Clarens are being targeted. This is not going to be a one-day event or single-year occurrence. Once a learner has been enrolled into the system they will be helped mainly with the English Language and Mathematics until they complete Matric. The idea is to make sure learners from Clarens get Matric passes that can help them study further in areas of choice. In the long run, Nnete Foundation also looks forward to source bursaries for deserving learners to help them further their studies.
Laptops have already been donated and tutor programs obtained and installed. The tutor programs can help individuals struggling with a subject, e.g. Maths, giving video lectures and exercises to tackle. If a learner struggles with an exercise, there is an option to go to a page where the problem is solved, stage by stage.

Some Grade 10 learners from Moriting wa Thuto Secondary School and learners from Clarens Combined School and Ntsu Secondary School benefited from the testing period from 15 October 2015 to 26 November 2015. 18 learners were enrolled for that period. The number is set to be increased to 30 when the Foundation gets fully operational early next year. The Official Opening is then expected to in January 2016 and there will be two staff members fully dedicated to the work.

Besides helping learners from schools the Clarens Community is also set to benefit immensely from life programs that will be run from time to time, free of charge. The only currency requested in return to services rendered is commitment and an eagerness to learn. Volunteers who are experts in their areas of specialisation will come to tutor and mentor. Health related issues, financial management, and other crucial aspects of the livelihood of mankind will be covered. Hanna Banks, originnally from the United Kingdom will be in charge of all the operations from January 2016.

Some signs are already showing that this work is set to impact the educational level in Clarens. Margaret, the principal of Dihlabeng Christian School has seen the need for such a foundation and has inspired the school to donate a sizable amount of money towards the establishment of Nnete. This is an indisputable prophecy of the impact of Nnete on mental faculties.
The work is being established, you can be part of this big dream.

Article and Photos by Onward Blessing Mvurume

Miss Dihlabeng 2015 – 2016



Thandi Tee-bone Mashinini brought joy to the youths of Clarens by organising of Miss Teen Clarens 2015, with Siya Mofokeng. A great success was registered on Saturday, 28 November and Puleng Jobo started her reign. It is Miss Dihlabeng now and Thandi is the only one representing Clarens. Let us help her continue putting the beauty of Clarens on the map.
Miss Dihlabeng will be crowned on Saturday, 19 December, at the Bethlehem Town Hall. Thandi is one of the 24 finalists. Each of the finalists has been allocated a unique code and Clarenites can rally behind and vote for Thandi.
It is not by mistake that Clarens is called the jewel of Freestate. The beauty of our own, Thandi is also a testimony to that!
The pageant was officially launched at the Dihlabeng Mall on 19 October 2015 by the Dihlabeng executive mayor, Tjhetane Mofokeng. A lot of emphasis is being put on the importance of education. Exciting prizes are just waiting for the day.
Let us contribute in bringing the crown and prestige to Clarens by voting for our choice, Thandi (in the picture). To vote, sms ” MISS D #39″ to 43359. Each sms costs R1,50.

Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative

Raising a self-sustaining community.

Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative Iphahamiseng Construction and Multipurpose Cooperative
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A community that is self sustaining is well positioned for great development. “Raise yourself ” is the literal translation of the sotho term Iphahamiseng. Registered in 2010, the cooperative has already equipped and transformed lives. An hour with John Mondi, the Coordinator of Iphahamiseng gave birth to this article.

The old adage can be used here with no apologies, ” Give a man a fish and you will have to feed that man the rest of your life. Teach a man to fish and he will feed his own family!” The work that Iphahamiseng has done and continues to do is commendable. This is a for-profit organisation, with the community at heart. The cooperative trains anyone from the community to use their hands to make a living, for free. After gaining skills, any beneficiary can get employment in other companies or organisations that do work related to the skills acquired. The cooperative deals a lot with construction, and has many other facets where anyone and everyone looking for a livelihood can fit.


Fencing, buglar bars, security doors and gates, steel frames, artistic flower stands, flamboyant steel frames, …you can name it. Steelworks is like a daily bread to the men and youths at Iphahamiseng. To prove its worth, the cooperative was given a tender to do the steelwork at Clarens Primary School as the school is being taken to another dimension. That is a great achievement for a child born in 2010. All over Clarens and in establishments close to Clarens the cooperative has also been involved in fencing and other construction works.

The cooperative has personnel well trained to do paving works.


Iphahamiseng is not only focused on the male gender. A number of ladies are doing a great work to feed their families and the community with fresh agricultural produce. They are also supplying restaurants in town with fresh vegetables. Amigos restaurant can testify to this.

Using the tunnel that was established by Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority (TCTA) for the cooperative, different types of greens are being farmed all year round. When I visited the site, next to the Recycling Centre, I saw a good establishment of green beans, spinach, carrots, onions and tomatoes. I am an eyewitness to this, healthy eating is being advocated by this department, under the Iphahamiseng umbrella.

TCTA did not only donate the tunnel, it also helped in the establishment of a chicken project. A fowl run was thus built near the site of the tunnel. The fowl run is however not functional at the moment but plans to bring it into motion are on the cards.

Mamonini Semase is the Supervisor at the Agricultural site.

As I mentioned earlier, the cooperative offers skills development courses to the community for free. Anyone from the community can be trained to work with steel. Up to seven people can be trained at any given point, and the training takes four months. After the training, the beneficiary is given a cetificate that shows the skills attained. They can also be helped to look for jobs in other establishments.

The trainees are first taught how to work with meaurements. From there they are exposed to different types of machines, maintainence, safety precautions and how to use them. After showing an understanding of the machines and welding, the trainees are then given tasks to work on. One task after the other is given until one can work on a variety of jobs.

For more information on Iphahamiseng follow them on twitter @iphahamiseng

Onward 2Article by Onward Blessing Mvurume

November, 2015

Clarens has Talent


Working with the youths on almost a daily basis has made me see the eagerness that many youths have to have their talents exposed and appreciated. Clarens is not only the jewel of Freestate when we talk about its blessedness in relief splendour and classy hospitality, a generation of talented youths is also rising. In this wake, Dihlabeng Christian Church Youth Group has organised a platform for ‘Clarenites’ to show their talents.

The Dihlabeng Christian Church Youths will be going for a Camp from 06 January 2016. This type of camp has become an annual happenning. It helps youths to focus on being the best in the year ahead. The more focused youths a commmunity has, the more the potential it has to develop. These camps are normally paid for to attend. For 2016, the organisers are focusing on taking as many youths to the camp as never before. They thus do not want the camp antendees to be burdened by paying exorbitant fees to attend. This has made them to come up with this afundraising Talent-Show. All the funds to be raised on this day will go towards the January 2016 camp.

The Talent-Show will be held onn Wednesday 09 December 2015 at Dihlabeng Christian Church, from 17h00.

I can see two birds being hit by one stone here. First, the Talent-Show is a platform for the exposure of the talents embedded in Clarens. Secondly, the Talent-Show is a fundraising for a Camp that will change the lives of a sizable number of youths in our community. This is not a business, but an input into the development of minds and talents. One man once said,”The future of a forest lies in a seed.”. This is a plaform for the birth of a great forest, a great community.

OnwardArticle by Onward Mvurume

November, 2015


16 Days of Activisim 2015

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Onward Activism 1

Violence should not at any point be tolerated. In all its forms it is an evil beast. Every year the need to concientize communities about the need to stop it continues to escalate. This year the 16 Days of Activism are going to be from the 25th of November to the 10th of December. As a way of campaigning to stop violence against WOMEN and CHILDREN, Phaphama Youth Development is working hand in hand with the Police to organise activities that will take place from the 25th of this month to the 10th of December.

The aim of all the activities is to open the eyes of our generation to fight against all forms of violence. Schools and the general community will get informed from the marches and gatherings that are going to take place. Mojalefa and Leralla schools are also going to be part of these campaigns. There is a great need for the farm communities to get to know their rights and fight against violence and abuse. That has made the organisers see a need to run the campaigns at 2 farms on the 7th and 8th of December.

On 25 November there will be a March as we start these campaigns and on the last day, the 10th of December there will be another march.

The community, all schools, civil society, the business sector and NGOs are being invited to take part in these campaigns.


To be part of it join the events as they come. You can also get hold of Mr Onward Blessing Mvurume on 073 054 3145 or Constable Mlangeni on 073 720 8483. A united voice makes more impact. Kgubetswana needs to raise its voice against violence and the time is now!

Onward 2Article by Onward Mvurume

November, 2015

Clarens Combined School – Awareness

Great work being done by the Police, Phaphama Youth Development Child and Youth Care workers and Tsepong Care workers. From Wednesday the 4th of November 2015 to Friday the 6th, Constable Mlangeni from Clarens Police Station worked hand in glove with Pinkie Mashinini, Mamoqebelo Mokoena, Ntaoleng Motloung, Neo Motsoeneng Rosa, Emily Nkosinkulu, Thabiso Mokebe, Mphikeleli Ncala, Tona, Sibongile Matches, Ouma, and Nometi to raise awareness at Clarens Combined School. They worked with Grade 5 to Grade 9 classes. Topics covered include: Teenage Pregnancy, Drug Abuse, Human Rights and Sexual Offense and Bullying. Here is their work in pictures.

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Onward 2Posted to Clarens News facebook page 6.11.2015

by Onward Blessing Mvurume