Written by the Mergon Foundation
A remarkable story of unwavering dedication and faith has been unfolding in the Eastern Cape’s coastal town of Jeffreys Bay and surrounding areas, some 78 km from Port Elizabeth. This project, named Victory4All, has been taking on sizeable proportions, earning global interest and support.
How did it start?
Johan and Astrid Vos gave up their lives in the Netherlands at the end of 2002 to come to South Africa, committed to making a lasting difference in the lives and futures of the less privileged children of Jeffreys Bay and its surrounds.
Under the guidance of the local Victory Church, their passion saw the birth of the non-profit charity organisation
Victory4All Foundation Trust (V4All) on 1 May 2003, initially focusing on providing milk to the needy in the slums of Jeffreys Bay and Humansdorp.
From these modest beginnings, the V4All organisation has subsequently directed millions of rand into the community – with a particular focus on education and other related needs for children.
Noah’s Ark Play School: On the first of May 2005, their first real project saw the light of day, namely the Noah’s Ark Play School, home to over 140 little children between the ages of one and six where they receive two healthy meals a day, which are often their only meals for the day.
Here, before going to primary school, the children obtain a firm foundation and a safe environment for development. Through playing, crafting, singing, dancing, stories and a focus on language development (English and Afrikaans), the children are prepared for their next educational phase.
King’s College: The Vos couple’s next significant initiative of faith was the V4All Primary School, known as King’s College, which opened its doors in 2007. Soon, owing to the growing number of smaller children and an increasing demand for educational facilities in the area, a new and larger building had to be built for King’s College.
Relying mostly on external funding for all its projects, the construction of Phase One of the new school building, which was to be home to King’s College, commenced.
At the end of 2017, relocation to the new R34 million school building accommodating over 350 primary school learners took place and a meaningful new momentum and impetus to this essential community educational institution started.
In total, the 22 classrooms cater for close to 400 Grade R to Grade 7 learners from Tokyo Sexwale, Ocean View and surrounding areas. The next phase includes an administration block and extra classrooms, a computer room and additional ablution facilities. A school hall, sports field and parking area are also in the pipeline. The school will furthermore boast a modern library, sporting brand new books donated by Rotary Jeffreys Bay.
Rainbow Day Care Centre: Starting in 2006 with 10 kids, this V4All project – after years of careful planning and endless fundraising efforts – gained momentum in 2008 with the construction, renovation and management of a new venue in Kruisfontein, Humansdorp. The Centre is home to 104 learners with special needs, such as physical and mental disabilities or learning difficulties.
The Centre now boasts nine classrooms, ablution facilities, a computer room, an art studio, a school hall, a skills centre and a new headmaster’s office. In 2016, V4All also started with the construction of the new Skills Centre across from the Rainbow Centre.
Foster homes and other facilities: With the help of their enthusiastic team, V4All started four foster homes in Jeffreys Bay in 2007 and three foster homes in Humansdorp in 2013 at a combined cost of R4.65 million. The organisation also renovated two completely vandalised buildings at the Ocean View taxi rank and transformed them into a bakery and a soup kitchen.
“We remain positive in what we are doing, despite numerous socio-economic and other challenges facing our local communities. These include a high birth rate; hundreds of teenage pregnancies; a total overcrowding of other local schools and an inferior quality of education. We truly believe that what we have achieved thus far, is just the beginning,” says Johan & Astrid Vos who are deeply inspired by the calling of God. “Not because we are smart, but because of His blessings and His dream for the children of this community.
Very modest about the successes achieved by V4All, the Dutch couple further observe “God has been so good to us. Despite difficult economic times, we are blessed with funds we receive from America, Europe and South Africa.” They also contribute the success of the organisation to a strong team of faithful and beautiful people with a high level of integrity – especially when it comes to finances. “At V4All, we use 100% of all donations received in and around our different schools and foster homes. We truly believe that nobody can fight this huge battle in isolation. It is good to pray together, work together and be part of a team that brings the solution.”
Lilly Rossouw, Relationship Manager (South Africa) for the Mergon Foundation, commented: “It is such a privilege for the Mergon Foundation to partner with Victory4All – a daily beacon of hope to over 650 learners and the community at large.”
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