03/10/2017 • 1:19 pm Comments Off on Join us for the Ball of HOPE 2017
05/10/2016 • 9:16 am Comments Off on Preparing for the USA
It has been quite a weekend with the Ball of HOPE taking place in Cape Town and also the AGM of the HOPE Cape Town Trust. And while some quests still remain in Cape Town and enjoying the mother city but also learning about the project, preparations are running high for a trip to the USA.
In February “HOPE Cape Town USA” was founded in Dallas / TX (www.hopecapetownusa.com) and now the four newly appointed directors are due to meet for the first time at the end of May. Besides this, meetings with NGO’s and other interested entities are scheduled in Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and New Jersey. Besides the marketing and fundraising efforts this new family member of the HOPE Cape Town family will serve for, HOPE Cape Town USA is also instrumental to reach out and learn from each others experience in the fields of HIV and AIDS. Knowing that in parts of the USA, for example Washington DC, the HIV rate amongst Afro-American is as high as in South Africa, there is enough common ground to contemplate how to best practice can be applied in instances, where poverty, unemployment and other factors determine and driving the infection. For HOPE Cape Town it is an exciting new step to expand knowledge and to raise awareness for the plight of those living here around the Cape of Good Hope with the syndrome or being affected by it.
Having said that I am already amazed how dedicated the people in the US already known to us are driving this new adventure, with how many heart and courage they prepare for all the encounters and dedicate time and money to make it happen. It is a humbling experience knowing that you are not alone and that hearts and minds are open and willing to assist in whatever way possible. It once again also forces me to reflect, that all our doing in South Africa at the end is only possible if and when other people just join in.
I mentioned that in my presentation at the Ball of HOPE that not me, not even all my colleagues and HOPE Cape Town co-workers together could stem the tide of HIV if and when not an extended HOPE family would lent support in so many ways: money, prayers, good thoughts, network opportunities, goodwill… the list goes on and on.
So I am excited to experience the further expansion of the HOPE Cape Town family into the “land of the free” and I hope to free up lots of goodwill and support so that HOPE Cape Town can continue to support those infected and affected by HIV, AIDS, TB and related illnesses.
04/28/2016 • 6:30 pm Comments Off on May days and US blues
It is the time of the year – May and the prestigious Ball of HOPE is on again – this year with Nevio Passaro as a special guest coming from Germany to entertain those lucky to have a ticket. A sold out event is always a dream for the organizers and also this year we are indeed full to capacity. The Southern African – German Chamber of Commerce and HOPE Cape Town celebrating 15 years of the Ball of HOPE, 15 years of HOPE Cape Town Association and 10 years of HOPE Cape Town Trust. Time is indeed flying and it seems yesterday when we started humbly with opening the ward G7 at Tygerberg Children’s Hospital. Was it at the beginning important to have a ward dedicated to infectious diseases and to administer treatment – in those days government were battling anti-retrovirals as poison – so is the scenario now completely different. The mother to child transmission rate is down to 5% but could be pressed further down to under 1%. People on anti-retroviral treatment are staying healthy longer and longer – but still HIV is a major contributor to the death toll of South Africa. All the prevention work has not cut down the new infection rate the way it was expected – so the status quo of HIV in South Africa is still remaining a mixed one.
15 years of HOPE Cape Town Association also means 15 years of support from so many different people, some being members of the HOPE family since interception of the project, others have come and gone and many are joining in our days. They are all a blessing for those HOPE Cape Town is able to assist in getting a life back with the possibility of a good future.
But “balls” are not falling from heaven – preparation is hard work and bringing together great entertainment, good food and all the logistics coming with it seems every year to be a never-ending story. That the AGM of the HOPE Cape Town Trust is the very same day of the Ball of HOPE makes this day even more challenging.
If you live in South Africa welcome to watch Expresso Show on SABC 2 Friday, 6th of May in the morning and watch Katlego Maboe, our HOPE Cape Town Goodwill Ambassador performing with Nevio Passaro from Germany. So you get a glimpse of what to expect at the Ball of HOPE 2016.
But May is not only marked by this local event, HOPE Cape Town is adding a new sister entity called “HOPE Cape Town USA” which was founded in Dallas Texas some weeks ago. I will fly to the first directors meeting mid May and if you read this blog and live in or around Dallas, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago or New Jersey and you want to help, assist, meet up – just let me know and we will get in touch. The HOPE family is growing and being a HOPE ambassador is a worthwhile cause. Spread the word, make connections, support those living here in South Africa with little hope for a bride future. HIV, TB and related illnesses, connected with poverty, unemployment, weak education is a recipe for disaster, not only in a personal life but at the end for a society as a whole. You can make a difference in the life of others – count your blessings and pass on some to those without/.
03/03/2016 • 7:36 am Comments Off on Ball of HOPE 2016 in Cape Town
05/17/2015 • 5:58 pm Comments Off on After the Ball is before the Ball…
I am not sure the reader can relate to the relief and exhaustion one is overcome after the successful conclusion of an event like the Ball of HOPE. Preparations for a ball normally start a year before by determining the date of the next year’s event and “save the day” memos are sent out to all having shown interest in the event. Then obviously if one wants to have certain performers or speakers it is within this time frame to approach them and ask them whether they could block the time and commit to next years event. 5 months before the Ball of HOPE activities become more obvious with sending out invitations, getting with the venue operators into the details of execution, having meetings about program details and also acquisition of raffle prices are on the to do list. From that very moment until 48 hours before the ball commences, there are permanent activities of registrations, invitations, changes, and even in the last 24 hours before the doors of the ball room open, there are last-minute requests and changes. As the Ball of HOPE becomes more and more also an international event, guests arrive in the week before and logistics to accommodate and entertain become more of an issue. Adrenalin is pumping in the last hours of the Ball of HOPE and only when the dance floor is open the organizers can sit down and simply relax for a couple of hours and enjoy simply their own hospitality. This goes until the next morning, when the relief and exhaustion sets in as described in the first sentence of this posting and then… all starts again … the circle of preparing and executing a successful Ball of HOPE..
And this post would not be complete without thanking all who contributed to this success this year with hard work and dedication, but also those who came as guests and supported the good cause of HOPE Cape Town. It was great to have the Brooklyn Holy Cross Senior School Choir again – together with HOPE Cape Town’s Goodwill Ambassador and MC Katlego Maboe as well as Kim, the beautiful singer and the musical band under the leadership of Adolf Thelen they all contributed tremendously towards a successful charity eve.
Besides relief and exhaustion there is a great sense of joy that so many hands joined forces to assist their brothers and sisters in need. And doing this while having fun means to truly be an ambassador for and of HOPE.