Mark Twain said “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born, and the day you find out why”.

Saturday 29th November at the Stanford Stumble was that day for me. To see a sixteen-year old autistic boy, who doesn’t cope well with crowds and whose mother has never seen him participate, walking together with over 200 walkers. To see a young boy with Down’s syndrome, dancing and twirling on the dance floor to the sounds of the band, ladies lining up to dance with him. To see our own darling Jack, dressed in his superman outfit, so pleased and proud to welcome his classmates to his event.

Special needs children often make people uncomfortable. I know, because I used to feel the same.

All that these children want is to be seen, and to be loved. Once you are able to see past the differences you will be shown something beautiful, something unique. These children truly do shine from within.

The Stanford Stumble raised funds, but very importantly, it raised awareness. It took a lot of help from many people, and everyone gave with such loving generosity. Thank you from Anima Therapy Centre. Thank you from the Butterfly Foundation.  And a big thank you from Samuel James Kastner (20 July 2011-8  February 2013) whose spirit was so greatly felt on the day.

The three winners of the 4km were delighted when their prize was announced, and they took off with African Wings from the farm’s airstrip for a scenic flight and a bit of an air show.  Thanks Evan and Dave Austin, that will have to be a tradition now!

Some amazing things have happened.

A man by the name of Dave came for lunch one day, and ended up volunteering his band Out of Order for the event. They surprised us all with their unique sound and they had the 300 strong crowd mesmerized.

A gorgeous friend and ex-tutor of Jack’s built a website for the Butterfly Foundation, from scratch, and sent me the link. Thanks Kelly, you are a rock star.  Check out www.butterflyfoundation.co.za

A friend from school days let me know she had her 40th on the same day as the Stumble. Instead of gifts, she requested donations, and raised R6000 towards the total! Thank you Vanessa, it is wonderful to know there are such good people in the world.

Stanford Rotary also pledged and donated R1000, another example of caring community support.

Thanks to Bartho Eskteen  for helping Peter with the auction, and Sune for talking him into it!.

In the New Year (after a much needed holiday) we will load info about the Stumble, and start planning for next year.

Thank you to James Peter Yeats for the wonderful short movie which so captures the mood of the day.

For more pics of this happy event see

http://vivvdh.wix.com/stanford-nestle-in#!blog/c1hi2

I will try and thank everyone, but it is impossible not to leave some out. But our warm love and appreciation goes out to everyone who had a part in this, and all the volunteers on the day. A total of R31 278.00 was given to Anima from the Butterfly Foundation.

We will see you next year!

With love and blessings from Jami, Peter and the boys

 

Thanks to the following:

I am grateful to have met Ronel and Jenny and the team at Anima, for their assistance and welcoming our family into their special world.

Kelly Sauerman

Kiekie designs for the poster

Sanity farm

Compuworld Stanford

Lin Morris (and Neil)

Scenic South,

Stanford Village Properties

Overberg Gems,The whole team at the Tasting Room for all their work and financial contribution

The Stanford Hills staff who volunteered on the day

Fynbos Gardens, Hermanus

Stanford Plant Hire

Gansbaai Marine

Silvana and Eddie Burger

Raka

Sir Robert Stanford Estate

Walker Bay Vineyards

Misty Mountain

Springfontein

Brunia Wines

Stanford Hills Estate

The Orpens, Heron Ridge wines

John and Callie Williams

Francolinhof Guest House

African Horse Company

African Wings

Dee’s Homemade Seed Bells

Fynbloem

Country Life magazine

Gill Alderman Gallery

Goose Cottage, Stanford

Caroline Kastner for collecting in England