God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

Reflections / Gedanken

In between all the public holidays..

It is difficult for Non-South Africans to understand the time between end April and May, where several public holidays as well as this year the national elections create somehow a very disruptive life for people living in this country. Long weekends tempt people to go away for a couple of days and it is difficult to get appointments or keep them intact.
For HOPE Cape Town this time is also a time before the Ball of HOPE. Excitement about this event being sold out is paired with the anxiety that everything is going alright and will work according to plan. Also on the hospital side there are movements. The Ithemba Ward has finally moved to the 10th floor and the question now is what happens to the HOPE Cape Town office. Do we move with to the 10th floor or do we look for alternative space as we are asked to provide services for all wards? Whoever works in public entities knows how painstaking such a process is and Tygerberg Academic Health Complex is unfortunately not the exemption of the rule. So Sonja and her office is floating a little bit in between decision-making processes and all the public holidays hindering those processes coming to a conclusion. On the positive side is to report that HOPE Cape Town has successfully employed to new members to the HOPE Cape Town family and that fundraising and marketing now will be done much more professionally and up to the point. The so-called “back – office” is now complete and starts to get into gear. This is good news before the AGM of the HOPE Cape Town Trust which will also decide on streamlining certain aspects of the work of HOPE Cape Town as an entity. 13 years into the course, the organization is somehow entering a new stage of its life without losing the heart and the core of its mission and vision. As somebody being the initiator of the project I am very proud to see how HOPE Cape Town is growing and how my role is also changing. I always believed that for a founder there is a time to give up some responsibilities so that an organization not dies when the founder is dying. I guess we are on the right way, broaden the objectives and filling the gaps the government is not able to fill in 2014 – HOPE Cape Town has changed over the years and was always able to adapt to developments within South Africa. I am looking forward to all the new steps taken in the next 12 months and I am proud to be part of a journey full of life and dedication serving those who need it most being infected or affected by HIV or AIDS or TB.

Filed under: HOPE Cape Town Association, HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, HOPE Cape Town Trust, Networking, Reflection, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , ,

HOPE Cape Town Trust & Association working summary

HOPE Cape Town Connectivity

HOPE Cape Town Connectivity

Filed under: HOPE Cape Town Association, HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, HOPE Cape Town Trust, HOPE Gala Dresden, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

HOPE Cape Town – 10 years ago

HOPE Cape Town is celebrating its 10th year in existence – how did it look in the beginning? Here an excerpt from a report back in 2002:

October 2000 – June 2001

Since October 2000 a “working committee” consisting of members of the 4 partners has worked out a proposal for a “hiv outreach program and education”, which was presented to the Superintendent of the Tygerberg Health Complex and the Minister of Health of the Western Cape in Winter 2001

June 2001 – October 2001

After the agreement the finer details as members of the management committee etc. were discussed and agreed about – the opening of the project was scheduled the 29th of October 2001.

29. October 2001

Opening of the HOPE project. 150 invited guests attend the opening at Tygerberg Children’s Hospital. The then Minister of Health in the Western Cape, Mr. Nick Koornhof, opens the project together with the Superintendent of the Tygerberg Medical Complex and the Dean of the University of Stellenbosch. Guest speaker is Clem Sunter, Chairperson of the Chairman’s Trust of Anglo American, one of the experts in the fields of HIV/AIDS and economics. The opening is attended also from an official delegation of traditional healers. A rabbi, a priest and an imam give the blessings. Further speakers are Urim Amiram (Lufthansa Cape Town), Axel Schwirtz (Consul General of Germany), Alwin Hirner (Hirner Jewellery), Anja Spandern (Southern African – German Chamber of Commerce and Industry – office Western Cape), Dr. Maart (Director of the Tygerberg Children’s Hospital), Mr. Lorenzo Raynard (In the pink radio on Bush radio).


30. October 2001

Clem Sunter speaks at a luncheon of the Southern African – German Chamber of Commerce and Industry and advertises HOPE as “the example for the future of South Africa”. This event is at the same time the official launch of the ticket sale for the so-called “Ball of HOPE”, which will take place at the ballroom of the Mount Nelson Hotel in cooperation with the Southern African – German Chamber of Commerce and Industry – office Western Cape. Rev. Fr. Stefan Hippler, Chairperson of the Management Committee speaks about the project and the ball during this luncheon.

1. November 2001 – 31. January 2002

Preparation for the occupation of the Ward at Tygerberg Children’s Hospital. In a time where the hospitals are cutting down on budget and beds the administration of the Children’s Hospital acknowledges the value of the project by renovating the ward called “Ithemba”, which is dedicated towards infectious diseases and the HOPE project. Tygerberg Children’s Hospital runs the ward with all expenses (doctors, nurses etc), which is its contribution towards the project. It is important to highlight this contribution; too often, the state withdraws quickly when it comes to partnerships and donation money is used to upgrade and renovate buildings etc. Here we can talk of a real partnership where all steps are discussed and everybody is contributing to reach the goals.

01.02. 2002

The “Ithemba” ward is occupied; doctors and nurses are working in the ward


Mrs. Eleonor Speelman is employed as the project coordinator of HOPE. Mrs. Speelman worked 28 years for Tygerberg Children’s Hospital as a qualified nurse. The good working relationship of Mrs. Speelman within the hospital helps the project tremendously to work efficient in the hospital environment.

The Management Committee is established through the following members:

Rev. Stefan Hippler                Chairperson

Dr. Robert Gie                        TCH – University

Dr. Mark Cotton                     TCH

Dr. Monika Esser                    German-speaking Catholic Community of the Cape

Kathrin Hoyos                        Rotary Club of Signal Hill

The Management Committee is meeting every first Tuesday a month to discuss all matters arising.

Filed under: HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, Networking, Reflection, , , , ,

18.03.2010 Why has a day only 24 hours..?

This is a question, I often ask me, but then again, maybe I am the workaholic some people see in me. Be it as it may be, very often one wishes for more time to finalize matters, get the email box empty and all those nice things letting one feel satisfied in the evening when at home.

On the other hand one has to learn to limit oneself – life is more than just work. Only the balance between work and recreation makes life worth living. I guess sometimes my ying and yang are not in balance in this matter. 🙂

Today was filled with an interview, looking for a team secretary for our Ithemba ward and a meeting with the person responsible for the PR work of Tygerberg Academic Health Complex. It is important to keep in touch with her and also to discuss how we want to strive a balance now during the world cup year between the interest of visitors and journalists to learn first hand about the situation and the smooth running of a hospital ward. But I am confident that we are able to find the right balance. We also discussed the promotion of the  hospital itself – the fundraising efforts are – compared with other hospitals – still quite in the beginning of full blossoming and I offered my expertise to the lady if need be.

Rotary in the middle of the day – I needed some signatures to get a matching grant into motion. HOPE Cape Town needs urgently a second vehicle and we are grateful that some Rotary Clubs under the guidance of Michael Eisenmenger from the St. Wendel Club is taking it into their hands to organise the funding of such a vehicle. Rotary is a wonderful organisation, not only because of this, but after 13 years of being a Rotarian I am convinced that this big organisation is able to change a lot of the face of this earth.

Office work in the afternoon is part of almost every days life – sometimes I feel that emails are a curse rather than a blessing. But on the other hand quick communication is of essence in our days and so I try to keep up with it. Besides all the work in the fields of HIV and AIDS I am getting also more and more involved in the fields of renewable energy. Beginning of April we will constitute in Johannesburg a national working task force on renewable energy / energy efficiency under the umbrella of the Southern African – German Chamber of Commerce and Industry and I will be part of it as vice chair of the Regional Council of the Chamber. A lot new stuff to learn for me, but an exciting field and very much necessary in our days and specially also in South Africa. To learn new things also keeps an old mind going again.. good for my brain cells… 🙂

Evening – dinner with friends on a lighter note and with lots of laughter and chatter. Good so. A nice end to another 24 hours…

Filed under: HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, Reflection, Uncategorized, , , , , , ,

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© Rev Fr Stefan Hippler and HIV, AIDS and HOPE.
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