General > 2019 > November

Maitland Cottage & Born in Africa

25 November 2019

‘Born in Africa’ is a school-based service project, at St John’s, led by students and coordinated by Ms. Demyttenaere. The aim of this project is to help raise funds for the two charities ‘Maitland Cottage’ and ‘Born in Africa’.

Here is what these charities are about, how we and our school-based activity has helped so far to make an impact as well as our fundraising ideas for the upcoming months.

Maitland Cottage

‘Maitland Cottage’, located in Cape Town is, as stated in their own words: “the only dedicated Paediatric Orthopaedic hospital in the southern hemisphere”:

Through our fundraising in the 2018-2019 school year, our team of students was able to raise enough money for the hospital to complete the resurfacing of the quad walkway!

The charity chose to resurface the walkway with brick paving for better slip-resistance, durability, and strength.

This surface is environmentally friendly and aesthetic. It also benefits from easy installation, as well as a low budget. All of these details are described in the Thank You letter sent to St. John’s by Maitland Cottage. This letter also mentions that the sum of money we raised last year was so large that it allowed the charity to finish off their project completely with our funds only!

To give further thanks for our dedication and efforts, the charity created a special plate for us, dedicated to St. John’s International School!

More information can be found on their website:

Born in Africa:

‘Born in Africa’, located in Plettenberg Bay, Eastern Cape, provides academic, social and life skill programs to underprivileged children in South Africa to help them to get out of hopeless situations which are often linked to issues of poverty, abuse, and unemployment.

The organization, which started in 2002, runs a life skills programme the “enriches our learners by exposing them to live outside their rather limited daily routine.” And they aim to stimulate social and educational development in children, striving to create economically self-sustainable adults. (More information on their website:

Back in 2018, our team fundraised enough money so that Born in Africa could buy a plot of land in Kranshoek (a township next to Plett) where a potential Activity (Sports and Culture) Centre will be built!

To raise the money required, our team organized auctions at the beginning of 2018 and the beginning of 2019.

We are hoping that by the end of this semester, our team will have collected the necessary amount of money to fully fund the building of the activity centre!

How the school project works at the moment and our current goals:

Our charity group meets every B week Mondays at lunch. Here we discuss the money we’ve raised so far and our ideas to raise some more.

Our goal before travelling back to see both charities in February is for each student in our charity to raise 200 euros individually.

As part of the leadership team, we have:

  • Gwen Michalec, Abby Michael and Juliette Zwally are presidents
  • Romain : overall manager BIA
  • Sophie Liska and Zoe Taymans as marketing managers
  • Main participants are Ihsane Erriyahi, Ernest de Romrée, Johnathan Quintieri, Lauranne Van Keer, Lucy Loyley, Charlie Fisher, Lénie Kamdem, Tessa Jeger, Gabrielle Lamotte and Valentine Vanhauter. A whole team of additional 10th-11th and 9th graders help out on a very regular basis

What we have achieved since September 2019:

We have raised 1636 euro so far this semester!

  • Our president, Juliette, has raised 1000 euros on her own. This money will go to buying a washing machine for the MCH hospital.
  • Lucy and Ihsane have raised 180 euros at an International day lunch and bake sale
  • Sophie, Jonathan and Ernest raised 211 euros from middle school activity night
  • Ernest and Jonathan have raised 200 euros selling Godiva chocolates
  • Gabrielle has raised 45 euros from a brownie sale
  • Sophie and Zoe have been editing the posters created by the rest of the group and putting them up around the school. Zoe is also responsible for all written materials regarding our group. She produces FB posts, blogs and travel reports.


Here are some of the recent fundraisers and more to look out for:

  • Movie night for Primary School students: (Sophie, Ihsane, Zoe, Lauranne):
  • Christmas gift wrapping (Abby, Gwen):
  • Raffle – with prizes! (Sophie, Abby):
  • Saint Nicholas comes to see the elementary kids; bearing gifts! (Juliette, Valentine and the other 9th graders): 
  • Dance afternoon: dance (Zoe (and if she needs helpers))
  • Game night! (Louis, Jonathan, Ernest):
  • Valentine’s Day roses and card delivery! (Zoe, Ihsane)


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