October Newsletter 2010

In Uncategorized on October 22, 2010 at 7:07 am
October 2010


Dear Readers

I hope that all of you enjoyed a blessed Heritage Day on 24 September 2010, celebrating the strength of our country, its people and what we have achieved.

In this month’s newsletter, you continue to celebrate people with epilepsy and other disabilities with us. You will note the success of Casual Day and you will read about how terrific some of our residential care clients fared at the Special Olympics. We are very proud of them!

We also share information about some of our programmes and fundraising initiatives and hope that you will join us at these events and become involved in our service delivery. We dearly need your support to turn obstacles into true potential for people with epilepsy, especially fighting to eradicate the discrimination that people with epilepsy still experience.

I want to say thank you to the respective Branch and National Office Board members that were elected at our recent AGM’s, as you provide your time and expertise to us free of charge to assist us in reaching our vision as an organisation.

If you wish to become more involved with our organisation, please contact your closest Epilepsy SA Branch by phoning 0860 EPILEPSY (0860 374537).


Noëline de Goede



The National Office hosted its Annual General Meeting on 11 September 2010. Following elections, the National Board for the 2011 year was thus constituted as follows:

National Steering Committee:
Mr Potso Mohajane (National Chairperson)
Mr Tim de Villiers (National Vice-Chairperson)
Mr Joseph Stoltz (National Treasurer)
Mr Solomon P Mokgata
Mr Christo Loots
Ms Kanyisa Ncemane
Dr Phindile Mnguni
Mr Michael Bagraim (advisory member)

Branch representatives:
South Cape/Karoo Branch: Mrs Sue Viljoen
Free State & North West Branch: Mr Sello Mofokeng
Mpumalanga & Limpopo Branch: Mrs Christene Muamba
Gauteng Branch: Mrs Roweena Stewart
Western Cape Branch: Prof Roland Eastman
KZN Midlands Branch: To be advised

National Office: Mrs Noëline de Goede (National Director),
Ms Marina Clarke (Deputy National Director) and Mrs Karen Robinson (National Social Development Manager)
South Cape/Karoo Branch: Mrs Vivien Paremoer (Branch Director)
Free State & North West Branch: Mr Gary Westwood (Branch Director)
Mpumalanga & Limpopo Branch: Mrs Mariana Holtzhausen (Branch Director)
Gauteng Branch: Ms Magdaleen Kruger (Branch Director)
Western Cape Branch: Ms Wendy Nefdt (Branch Director)
KZN Midlands Branch: To be advised

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NATIONAL OFFICE NEWS – 4th annual Wine Auction

NATIONAL OFFICE NEWS - 4th annual Wine AuctionThere’s only two weeks left before the Cipla Epilepsy South Africa Annual National Wine Auction on 28 October 2010. The Wine Auction has grown in stature every year and the 2010 auction promises to top it all! We are back this year in the luxurious Westin Grand Hotel in Cape Town and we know that with their five star cuisine, top wines of South Africa and fantastic entertainment, this will surely be a night to remember. If you have not yet purchased your ticket, now’s the time! Do not miss out on this year’s planned highlights, please read below:

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4th Annual Wine Auction – Master of Ceremonies

4th Annual Wine Auction - Master of Ceremonies Mr Paul Buckby , is a celebrated SA television actor, singer, television presenter and auctioneer best known for his role as Dr Adam Fischer on the M-Net soap opera Egoli: Place of Gold. He has appeared in a number of television shows, ranging from TV presenting to acting and was the master of Ceremonies at two Miss South Africa pageants. Paul is also an accomplished vocalist and will treat us to some of his charming melodies.

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4th Annual Wine Auction – Entertainment

4th Annual Wine Auction - EntertainmentEntertainment will be a feast to the ears as we enjoy the smooth jazz sounds and a range of enjoyable popular background music by Urban Groove during arrival and wine tasting, while Sterling EQ will dazzle us with their genre-defying musical style and sensational live performance.

 Sterling EQ has proved to be one of the most successful instrumental bands ever to come out of South Africa and have performed on the stages of coveted events such as the South African Music Awards (SAMA’s), the opening of the Cape Town stadium, the FIFA Final Draw party in Long Street, and IPL Cricket Tournament opening. They’ve shared stages with icons such as Boney M, Snow Patrol, Johnny Clegg, The Parlotones and Soweto Gospel Choir, and have entertained local and international celebrities to the likes of Elton John, Annie Lennox, and Lance Armstrong, to name but a few. Can’t wait to see them!

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4th Annual Wine Auction – Bidding

4th Annual Wine Auction - BiddingAuction! Auction! Auction! If you’re a serious bidder, you’ll be enticed by the special and unique lots available this year. (I will tease you with a picture or two…) If you’re not a serious bidder, you’ll have fun with the interesting and fun lots available. Bid against the likes of Cindy Nell, Dr Divan Serfontein, Jonty Rhodes as well as other familiar faces and stand the chance to win some serious prizes!

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4th Annual Wine Auction – Contact Us

The Cipla Epilepsy South Africa National Wine Auction is one of those events that you just cannot afford to miss! Please check for availability of seats with Wynand du Toit at Epilepsy South Africa National Office at 021 595 4900 or fundraising.no@epilepsy.org.za and join us for a night to remember.

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NATIONAL OFFICE NEWS – Entrepreneurial training



Epilepsy South Africa uses the Start and Improve Your Business Programme, developed by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). The Training of Trainers seminar will equip persons working in fields of development, job creation and poverty alleviation to assist people to start up their own businesses. The course not only deals with business management, but also offers an opportunity for the acquisition and development of training and facilitation skills.


The seminar will be hosted by Epilepsy South Africa at its National Office in Cape Town from 21 November to 3 December 2010. A maximum of 12 candidates can be accommodated.


This is a two week training programme which starts on the afternoon of Sunday, 21 November 2010 and ends on Friday, 3 December 2010. It is an intensive programme with four sessions daily:

• Early morning session: 08h00 – 10h00

• Late morning session: 10h30 – 12h30

• Early afternoon session: 13h30 – 15h30

• Late afternoon session: 15h45 – 17h30

Two sessions will also be held on the morning of Saturday, 27 November 2010. However, Saturday afternoon and Sunday is free time for participants.


• Participants will be introduced to the SIYB Programme and materials through two interactive sessions (4 hours).

• A business game is used to identify business problems and to give participants a taste of what it means to be an entrepreneur, the
problems faced by entrepreneurs and how they deal with them. It is a fun way of learning and participants are given the opportunity to
bring their own skills and knowledge into the learning process. Participants also acquire skills in the facilitation of the game.

• The timetable follows the SIYB training cycle with particular attention being paid to:

o Marketing the SIYB Programme.

o Selection and grouping of participants using Training Needs Analysis (TNA) tools.

o SIYB training methods, visual support and energizers.

o Preparation and design of training seminars.

o SIYB methodologies (adult learning).

o Effective presentation techniques.

o Preparation of training sessions.

o Follow-up methods.

o Evaluation of business plans.

o Monitoring and evaluation.

o SIYB tools for trainers.

• The seminar also introduces participants to concepts such as gender mainstreaming in enterprise development, managing HIV/AIDS
in the workplace, counseling techniques and action planning.

• Participants are skilled in assisting entrepreneurs to:

o Identify, analyse and select viable business ideas.

o Discover the basics of business and how to assist potential entrepreneurs in the establishment of their own businesses.

o Improve the management of their enterprises through the application of effective business management skills such as buying, stock control,
marketing, costing, record-keeping, business planning and productivity.

• In addition, participants are introduced to the Vuk’Uzenzele Entrepreneurial Development Programme – an audio-visual programme ideally
suited to potential and existing entrepreneurs with low literacy levels.

• As the SIYB Programme is a participatory and interactive programme, participants will be provided with opportunities for practical work,
including presentations.


To access this programme, please contact:

Marina Clarke, Deputy National Director, EPILEPSY SOUTH AFRICA,
P O Box 12100, N1 City, 7463.

Telephone: 021 595 4900, Fax: 021 595 4901
E-mail: economicdev.no@epilepsy.org.za

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Learn about epilepsy with fun!! On 29 November 2010, Epilepsy SA Free State and North West Branch is hosting an Epilepsy Treasure Hunt on the Vaal de Grace Golf and Country Estate. Entrance is R200 per team of two. You will enjoy exciting adventures such as riding your bike in the great outdoors, river rafting, and looking for answers on questions about epilepsy! Wonderful prizes can be won and the day will be concluded with a picnic on the island in the middle of the Vaal River. For more information, contact Tertius Meyer on (056) 811-5959 during office hours. We hope to see you there!

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As you are aware, Epilepsy South Africa has partnered with DSTV to explore epilepsy in an in-depth manner. We have now been given an unlimited number of interviews (at no cost) which will be aired on Channel 114, during the morning Breakfast Show “Good Morning Africa” from 07H00 to 07H45 and repeated on the same afternoons from 12H30 to 13H15.

We have covered a number of facets of epilepsy so far, but need suggestions for topics that you would like to watch. This is a golden opportunity that we have been offered and we have been very lucky to have captured the interest of DSTV viewers, who have been contacting the CEO with very positive comments. Most people view the subject of epilepsy as not very interesting, so we have to make the most of this opportunity to raise awareness and educate them. Please assist by sending your suggestions for topics to Sharm Knobel at HYPERLINK “mailto:pro.gp@epilepsy.org.za”pro.gp@epilepsy.org.za. I look forward to being inundated with suggestions!

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GAUTENG – ACSA Disability Conference & Expo

GAUTENG - ACSA Disability Conference & Expo  The annual ACSA Disability Conference and Expo took place on the 16th and 17th September 2010 in Midrand. Epilepsy South Africa (as a member of the South African Disability Alliance) participated in both events and hosted an information stand.

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GAUTENG – Luiperdskloof Youth Camp: 17 – 19 September 2010

The Gauteng Branch of Epilepsy South Africa hosted a youth camp at the beautiful Game Lodge nestled in Bronkhorstspruit in Mpumalanga. There were 22 participants from three different schools on the East Rand (Dr WK du Plessis, Matshediso and Phelang). These schools cater for learners with special educational needs and those living with epilepsy.

The ages of participants ranged from 14 to 18 years with the exception of two support group members from the community. The objective of the camp was ”to equip learners with rights based information on epilepsy to be advocates and ambassadors of Epilepsy South Africa”.

The youth camp involved a variety of activities, including a morning walk, a musical chairs game, a talent show and a series of workshops on epilepsy as a condition and the management thereof, as well as advocacy and human rights, sexuality and HIV/AIDS. The participants watched a DVD entitled “Yesterday” dealing with HIV/AIDS and other socio-economic and cultural issues.

The morning walk created an opportunity for participants to interact and get to know one another better. During the workshop, participants were able to understand that epilepsy is a condition and not a disease. Participants also learnt that epilepsy is not a barrier to keep them from achieving their goals in life. This helped them to understand their condition better and enabled them to articulate how it affected them. There were role plays to demonstrate how to conduct first aid when a person experiences a seizure while case studies stimulated discussions on how participants should think about their rights .Participants undertook to learn more about their rights as children living with epilepsy and other disabilities.

At the conclusion of the camp, participants wrote messages of hope for people living with epilepsy. One of the encouraging messages read: “My dream is to help other people living with epilepsy and other disabilities.”

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GAUTENG – Research

Would you like to make a difference by improving awareness and promoting understanding of the work-related needs of women with epilepsy? Your participation, as a volunteer in a research study, being conducted by Iodien Rensburg as part of his Master in Business Administration degree qualification, will contribute to improving the lot of women with epilepsy in the workplace. You will be required to describe your experiences of living with epilepsy in the workplace during an interview which will last for 45 to 60 minutes. The information will be used anonymously in the dissertation. Should you be interested in participating, please contact Mr. Iodien Rensburg at 082 733 3773.

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GAUTENG – Employment

If you are disabled and seeking employment, send your CV to Melissa at consultant@bradshawleroux.co.za, Liz Murray at lizm@crs.co.za or Sharm Pillay at sharm@resourceagency.co.za. They specialize in placing disabled people in various positions throughout South Africa. You can also register your CV and look for employment, as well as for advertisements on training/learnerships and internships suitable for people with disabilities on www.jobaccess.co.za (a website exclusive to people with disabilities) or www.ibility.org.za (an initiative of the Services SETA).

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MPUMALANGA & LIMPOPO - Casual DayThis year’s Casual Day theme was “Dress for laughs”. Here in Mpumalanga, we decided to have a fancy dress competition for our residents. Our offices were buzzing with all the excitement of making costumes and thanks to Liesel, Anel and Elsa that put in a lot of effort, all our residents had something to wear on 3 September 2010. Our winners, JF Thulani and Mara, each won a cash prize and thanks to Dullstroom Clock shop, all our residents received a lovely bedside table clock to thank them for their efforts. The day ended with a braai for our residents.

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MPUMALANGA & LIMPOPO – Special Olympics

MPUMALANGA & LIMPOPO - Special Olympics On 7 September, six of our residents joined the Special Olympics in Stellenbosch. The results were as follows:

  • Adrian Hawes: 800 m – fourth place ribbon, 400 m – third place bronze medal.
  • Christiaan Baartman: 800 m – fourth place ribbon, 400 m – second place silver medal.
  • Aaron Mnguni: 200 m – third place bronze medal, 100 m – seventh place.
  • Paul Simon: 200 m – third place bronze medal, 100 m – second place silver medal.
  • Lizelle Wahlstrand: 200 meters – third place bronze medal, 100 meters – seventh place

We are very proud of our residents who took part in this event and we are excited about being involved with the Special Olympics.

Towards the end of August, we were approached by the Special Olympics committee of Mpumalanga to host a sports day in honour of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the founder of the Special Olympics. We had this event on 22 September on our sports grounds. Platorand, Mpilonhle Primary, Hambanathi and Dasha School took part in this event with us. We had Mr August Matlala and Phillip and Jimmy from the Special Olympics committee, helping us to apply all the rules and regulations correctly. Dullstroom residential care centre did the catering for 230 people on the day. We had a great day and all the athletes enjoyed taking part in the events – we had bocce, basketball, table tennis, floor hockey and soccer. We were fortunate to have our local police station supporting the event and Constable Sithole handed out the medals.

 “Let me win. But if I cannot win let me be brave in the attempt” The motto of the Special Olympics – A motto that all of us present made our own on this special day.

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MPUMALANGA & LIMPOPO – Our new Branch Board

Our newly elected board members met on 18 September 2010 for the first time this year. We are looking forward to a productive period together with the new board.

Please contact Riette or Elsa at the fundraising and marketing office with any queries on 013 2540161.

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SOUTH CAPE/KAROO – Access to better healthcare for persons with epilepsy

Anton Potgieter, our volunteer doctor from Cape Town, visited the South Cape/Karoo region to monitor the medication of persons with epilepsy. He consulted with 340 patients, covering the area from Albertinia to The Crags and the Karoo towns of Oudtshoorn, Ladismith, Zoar, Dysselsdorp and De Rust. Due to financial constraints, he did not visit Beaufort-West and Murraysburg this time, but 24 patients from these towns were transported by ambulance to attend the Dysselsdorp clinic.

Dr Potgieter has declared himself willing to assist anyone who encounters problems with their epilepsy and is available during office hours (08h00 – 16h00) on (021) 919-1259. Our clients report excellent results with seizure control thanks to Dr Potgieter’s interventions.

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SOUTH CAPE/KAROO – Fundraising in partnership with the Knysna Apostolic Faith Mission (AFM)

We are looking forward to the weekend of 15 and 16 October 2010. The local AFM church is organising a number of events for this weekend on the Knysna High School sportsfields. A 24-hour cycling event is due to take place and throughout the day there will be stalls selling delicious snacks and other items to entertain visitors. Concurrently with this, enriching lectures aimed at strengthening the spiritual life of families will take place. Residents of the Epilepsy SA Centre will assist as marshalls at the cycling endurance event. All funds raised will be shared between the church and Epilepsy SA.

The support received from the Knysna community in the face of our current financial crisis is really heart-warming.

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SOUTH CAPE/KAROO – Casual Day 2010

Casual Day 2010 was a huge success for us and was concluded with a street parade through the Main street of Knysna. After the street parade the local SAPS entertained our Centre residents and Day Visitors to a show by the police dogs in their narcotics division. This was followed by a braai – a great way to end our fundraising campaign, which was well supported by the community and the families of Centre residents. Many thanks to all concerned. The national Casual Day organisers will visit us on 4 October – watch out for us in the next Casual Day News newsletter.

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WESTERN CAPE - Casual DayEpilepsy South Africa Western Cape Branch hosted a successful Casual Day on 3 September 2010 at Metropolitan in Bellville. There was a lot of activity, selling of stickers and promoting awareness around people living with disabilities. We’d like to extend a special thanks to all our participants, particularly to the Department of Education, who co-ordinated the distribution of stickers to schools in the Western Cape

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WESTERN CAPE – Computer based ABET

WESTERN CAPE - Computer based ABETAs part of improving our workers’ skills, an Adult Based Education and Training (ABET) programme was launched in February 2010 with 12 workers (six from Care Craft Lansdowne and six workers from Care Craft Mitchells Plain) participating. The training took place three times per week, whereby the workers worked individually on their tasks and assignments. The fourth day was for consultation with the practical facilitator to discuss their progress and for assisting them with any further training needs. This training process was conducted over six months and completed in September 2010. We would like to congratulate all the workers who took part in this training.

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WESTERN CAPE – Election of Branch Board Office Bearers

An election was held at the Branch Board meeting on 29 September and the following members were elected into the following portfolios: Chairperson: Professor Roland Eastman Vice Chairperson: Mrs Esmé Kennel Treasurer: Mr Lindsay Kearns Vice Treasurer: Mr Malcolm Brown The Branch congratulates them on their elections, respectively. We also welcomed two new Board members to the meeting. Mrs Johannah Keikelame is a lecturer in health promotion at UCT and has researched and presented papers on matters pertaining to epilepsy management and stigma. Mr Charles America is a person with epilepsy and has been participating in our epilepsy seminars over the past few years.

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Visit our website or to contact any of our Branches or National Office.


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