In 2006 we started with collecting goods to fill a container for schools and AHOS in Paarl.
The idea was adopted by Marjanne Weggemans who has been a great motivator for this project. She kept everybody informed with pictures and stories at her website: HYPERLINK “http://www.container.waarbenjij.nu” www.container.waarbenjij.nu .
The first container was filled with everything we could get. Many clothes (for adults and children), toys, books, audio and video equipment, furniture to use for the Shelter and child care centre, bicycles, computers etc. etc. etc…
Three companies in Vlaardingen played an important role: Van Zanten Construction offered us storage space during the whole year, TECA took care of shipping goods from the UK to Holland and Dijkshoorn International movers took care of packing all the goods in a professional way in the container when we were ready to ship.
Computers who were donated by companies like RET in Rotterdam and Fujitsu-Siemens were initially shipped to Davinci Europe in Rotterdam where the IT department took care of upgrading and cleaning the systems before they were transported to the storage at Van Zanten.
Marjanne took care of checking all the materials, collecting goods and making packing list and papers for customs in South Africa. Fortunately she had great help from her family, Petra, Gert and Tiny.
The first (40 foot!) container was shipped in 2006.
The shipping was done also free of charge by Kopf und Lübben from Bremen, Germany in cooperation with Katlego Global Logistics in South Africa.
The second container was shipped end 2007 and had again lots of clothes, furniture and also musical instruments for the start of Morné Meyer’s new music school and the 3rd and last container was shipped in the end of 2008 and arrived the beginning of 2009. Because of all the problems with the South African customs we did not include any clothes anymore.
With all the containers we were able to decorate all three buildings of AHOS and helped many other institutions like the Paarl Children Hospital with clothes and toys, Schools with computers and Audio and video materials and sport equipment (all the stuff from a sporting hall by a school in Eindhoven was shipped!). Too much to list at this site.
Overall we have helped more than 30 institutions in and around Paarl with stuff from the containers.
Why was there no container in 2010?
To collect everything was a lot of work and after three years and three containers Marjanne had to focus on her health.
All the participating companies were still willing to continue with the container help. But in South Africa the paper work with customs became more and more difficult. John Martin had to drive up to the office in Cape Town many times and was able to get the import permit after 3 months of hard work with the help of Katlego and many discussions with government officials.
Unfortunately clothes are not anymore permitted to be included in shipment to South Africa. Unfortunately John Martin is not among us anymore. He died after a long battle with cancer. And Unfortunately Marjanne had to stop because of personal health situation.
The containers have helped many people and institutions.
If you feel you should pick-up the container story contact Marjanne@childrenofpaarl.com!