Journal - February 2011


Feb 22 – Living Room Soccer Moves

Visiting some friends in Ocean View – Karl plays a little “living room soccer” with a young friend. He's got skills!


Feb 16 – Sisters of the Sisterhood

We now have 15 women in the "Sisterhood of Success" class and they love every minute! They have learned how to change their mindset, overcome obstacles, set goals and create a higher expectation for their life.

This week they are in the “Sisterhood of Value” section (learning the value of work and how to be a valuable employee).

With a 25% unemployment rate, it's vitally important for these women to learn how to find and keep a job.

THE GAMES TODAY: To vividly illustrate how much it affects other people when you don’t call and don’t show up for work (a big problem here), they had to create book marks in an assembly line of two teams.

Then Richard (the teacher), pulled out three women from each line – and they still had to create the same product – with about half the workers. It was HARD to make book marks with only half the people!

To emphasize teamwork another way, they also played “janga”, but in the second half of the game, they had to pull out the janga pieces blindfolded, guided only by the voices of their team members.

Laughing hysterically, they are experiencing what it is like to trust and rely on each other. They are building real community, some for the first time in their life!

During each class we do a Discovery Bible Studies and they are learning how to hear God speak to them. It’s amazing to see these women laugh, share, and discover a God that cares deeply about them!

Let me tell you about Alli:

Alli is my Sisterhood partner! She's on our Baby Safe team and has been working in Ocean View for several years (she spends much of her time with the local prostitutes).

Alli is amazing and I found out last week she is fluent in Portuguese (she never happened to mention that tiny detail). That came in handy when a Portuguese speaking women joined our Sisterhood class (I had no idea either spoke Portuguese!).

She happens to be fluent because she has spent time in Mozambique - running an orphanage and carrying babies on her back while fetching drinking water for 20 people. If you ever pop into South Africa - you HAVE to meet Alli.


Meet Alli! She explains that a scotoma is your "blind spot."

She is translating the Sisterhood of Success lecture into Portuguese for one of the students. Little did I know Alli was fluent in Portuguese!

SORRY THIS VIDEO IS SIDEWAYS! Each student wrote one compliment for each of their classmates.

This student is so excited about "all the nice things" everyone said about her. For some of the women, this is the first time they have received positive feedback from members of their community.


Here is a Discovery Bible Study with our ladies from Masi (during the Sisterhood of Success class). They would read a passage in English then translate it into xhosa.

In this case they are discussing the verse from the first chapter of Genesis, "Let the water team with living creatures." There was a little confusion on the word "team."

At the beginning of class today, the women shared what they are thankful for.

Two of the women are grateful to have worked out a problem and one is thankful that her mindset is changing!


Feb 15 – Next Question

I (Karl) have spent some time with McKyle recently.

Today we took an hour long bike ride along the Atlantic coast near Ocean View. He told me he had never seen that part of Cape Town. We enjoyed a coke and watched the waves crash on the shore.

Last week we went out for breakfast. I had asked him to prepare 3 questions he wanted to know about me. (I told him I would ask him hundreds, so he was getting off easy)

His first question was easy.

He asked, "How old are Jensen and Emme?"

His next question floored me.

He asked, "Since Mrs. Julie and you (Karl) are together, why isn't my mom and dad together?"

We never made it to the third question.


I asked McKyle to choose a new soccer ball
(donated from our friends in the States).
He chose the USA ball!




Feb 12 – Money Matters

Thelma helping Claudine "look over the books"

I (Julie) am so proud of Claudine! She has worked HARD raising money for the Sisterhood of Success class!

She now keeps all of her personal family finances in a ledger book and writes down how she spends her money every day. She is almost debt free and excited about practicing stewardship!

Since she started the Sisterhood of Success class – her identity is changing. Instead of being a struggling single mom…she refers to herself as a business woman and carries herself accordingly. She always has her calculator with her and is continually thinking of new products to sell!

I know she will own businesses, have her own home and will mentor women in her community on how to follow a loving God.

I can’t wait to see how God is going to do it!



Feb 10 – What's Up With Karl

The community center in Ocean View continues to make progress, although it may be on African time!

I (Karl) had hoped we could be breaking ground sometime this spring and see this dream come to reality sooner rather than later. We continue to meet with many influential leaders, non-profits, churches and business - all who have the same dream to see the center built. We are currently waiting on the Department of Education for the Western Cape to provide 1/3 of the funding. (The other 2/3 funding has already been secured). Waiting on a governmental agency here can test your patience.

Some areas where I am involved...

    • Community Center - working to keep that moving forward (still securing funding)
    • McKyle -meeting weekly to invest and speak God's love into his life
    • Coaching - coaching and mentoring with the Ubuntu Football (soccer) Academy. It consists of U12/U13 boys from Ocean View and other townships in the area.
    • Ocean View High School - working with kids at Ocean View High School
    • All Nations - coordinating short term teams that come to serve in this area and helping with the new CPx students



Feb 8 – They Came!

Wow! I (Julie) can’t believe it! They came!

13 women are attending the class. I shouldn’t be surprised, since I am seriously working on my “joyful expectations”, but I am amazed they are all here.

I recently heard someone talk about how we only need to do 2% and God will do the other 98%. I’ve been telling God this past week, I can do my 2% (start the program, invite the women, help them fundraise, etc.) but if God doesn’t show up and do the other 98% - this won’t work.

The truth is, God invited them, so I really should have expected them to come! He sent out his invitation to drug addicts, prostitutes, women with HIV, desperate mothers…and they came.

One woman said, “It’s only been two days…but already my whole mind is changing!”

God is doing big things with these women! See the photos.

Richard, our Sisterhood of Success instructor, explains the essence of work etiquette.

Be courteous! He helps them understand what to do if they are going to be late, call in sick or miss a day. It's important to cover the basics!

Richard is explaining to the women about how their RAS (Reticular Activating System in the brain stem) helps them block out negative information.

He is teaching them how to retain information that is helpful and negate information that does not serve them well.

Richard reads a story to our women about a man who solved an "unsolvable" math problem - simply because he mistakenly thought it was a homework assignment (and not a famous unsolved math problem). Amazing!

He tells the women that some things you don't even try - because you think it's impossible. In reality, some things are only impossible because you don't try.

Feb 7 – Dance and Discovery


You might remember the “film club” girls I (Julie) met last year during CPx? These girls are amazing and want to continue to meet together! Although NONE of them have taken dance lessons before, they decided they wanted to go to a dance class and have a Bible study once a week. We found a local studio that offers them classes for half the price.

Before the class we spread a blanket out on the lawn and have a Discovery Bible Study.

As part is of a Discovery Bible Study, I asked them what they are thankful for and what they need. One girl said, “I need love from my mother” and a couple girls said “I need a job.”

Although many of them have a religious background, when I asked them to pray for each other’s needs, they said, “It’s only the men that pray out loud in our church.”

God is about to rock their world! I know these young girls will become women who pray to a God they know hears them!




Feb 2 - Just Taking It

I (Karl) was in Ocean View the other day and witnessed a disturbing event. I had pulled in near the flats and was waiting to pick up Julie who was in a meeting.

As I waited, I was approached by a young woman (not more than 17 years old). I quickly realized what she wanted. There aren’t many other reasons white guys come to Ocean View besides drugs and sex. What saddened me was that this wasn’t the first time this has happened to me in Ocean View… being propositioned by a prostitute on the sole basis that I was white and in her township.

Next, one of the many gangsters approached me to “check me out”. After explaining what I was doing in Ocean View, he just smiled, shook my hand and walked off. This was quite the scene with a lot of people watching.

One minute later, I viewed something that truly saddened my heart. I observed a young man and women sitting on a concrete block across the street.

They seemed to be in deep conversation. I watched as the young man got up and started digging in the dirt. He picked up some rocks and began THROWING them at her. I’m not talking about a pebble being tossed. I mean a rock thrown like a baseball. In amazement, she just sat there and let the rocks hit her in the back while ducking her head. He continued this for about 5 minutes.

I was in total shock. And then he stopped. He walked over and sat back down next to her again. They began to talk and acted as if what I had observed had never happened.

This woman was treated as on object, not a human (common theme in OV). And what saddened me was that she just “took it”. Can you imagine this happening to your daughter or in your neighborhood? A grown man throwing rocks at another human?

Thus, the problem of many in Ocean View is that what first appears normal is not and what appears NOT normal is tolerated as normal. I don't want to tolerate normal.


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