Vermaaklikheid sports program

The holiday youth sports program was a great success! Many thanks to all contributors ❤ 
Allister Miggels led the program and says that the children learned new skills. ‘Some couldn’t kick a ball, some couldn’t play in teams and to some it felt strange to be on a sport field but never the less before Friday the 7th of January 2022 those children who couldn’t kick a ball knew how to kick a ball and to those who it felt strange to be on a sport field enjoyed themselves so much that they couldn’t get enough of playing a ball’.
We would like to thank the Western Cape government’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport for funding the program. None of this would have been possible without the attention of our local librarian, Anneline Kistoor, who nominated the Duiwenhoks Conservancy to the program, via the Hessequa Municipality librarian service, and on to the Western Cape Library Service which supported our application.  Many thanks to each of you for your support. 
Children were provided with a small lunch every day, and there was a combination of outdoor and indoor activities. 

The Vermaaklikheid Sports Field Initiative

Phase Three: Providing for and ensuring the ongoing maintenance and management of the playing field and equipment

Purpose and Intention

The Vermaaklikheid community faces challenges that confront most rural communities in the Southern Cape: poverty, inadequate school facilities and limited employment opportunities.

To compound these problems Vermaaklikheid is isolated and many children do not complete their schooling. In addition a lack of any facilities for our under 18 year-old residents contributes to alcohol and drug abuse and the petty crime to support these habits.

There are approximately 90 children under the age of 18.

Progress to Date

The Vermaaklikheid Winkel Project is a non-profit association formed by a number of residents within Vermaaklikheid. The founders’ intention is for the Vermaaklikheid Winkel Project to serve as an association that facilitates the social development of the local community of Vermaaklikheid.  One of the first projects the concerned residents undertook was The Vermaaklikheid Sports Field Initiative.  To date, phases one and two have been completed.

Phase one: Community Engagement and an Assessment – Completed

In 2018, a number of concerned residents attempted to address some of these problems by initiating a consultative process that culminated in a survey of the community to assess the current situation. The survey focussed its inquiry around an achievable goal: the establishment of a multi-use playing field and providing sports equipment for the children of the village. The survey was returned with unanimous support for the facility from 35 households.

Phase two: Providing a useable playing field and basic equipment – Completed

  1. Secured the land needed for the field.
  2. Cleared the land of highly invasive and resilient reed and other weeds.
  3. Raised funds from local land owners (approximately R60 000) and installed an irrigation system and access to a water supply.
  4. Supported the establishment of indigenous grass.
  5. Provided half-sized football goals for children and youth. Rugby pole extensions are to be added shortly in response to the community’s needs.
  6. Provided a weed-eater to cut the grass

We now have a GivenGain fund-raiser for phase 3 of the Vermaaklikheid sports field.

Now we want to buy a lawnmower and employ a grounds person to ensure that the sports field grounds are maintained. We’re aiming for R24 200, which should cover a year’s maintenance, plus the purchase of a lawnmower.

If you can, please contribute to this initiative? Link is below.

GivenGain provides a secure, online donation and fundraising platform to charities, donors and fundraisers. All funds raised go directly to this initiative.


Duiwenhoks Conservancy AGM 2021

Duiwenhoks Conservancy AGM 2021

We completed our first digital Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 24 March 21.

Many thanks to all who attended it and gave us feedback, especially during the committee election section. We really appreciate your interest. 

If you are interested in the recording, it can be found here:

Our AGM agenda included:

  1. Chairman’s Report + finances 
  2. Review of 2020 initiatives
  3. Hessequa Municipality property valuation 2021
  4. Wild fire: Vermaaklikheid fire fund & February 2021 fire
  5. Alien clearing: Uitvlug case study
  6. Duiwenhoks Estuary Report by Dr Lara van Niekerk & Dr Stephen Lamberth
  7. Election of Committee for 2021/2

We will share more soon! 

A Practical Permaculture Workshop

The Conservancy hosted a Permaculture Design workshop over 2 days in November 2020.

On our first morning, we spent some time understanding the basics of Permaculture. There are 3 ethics involved: to care for the earth, to care for people, and to share the surplus. The rest of the time was outside, learning how to apply some Permaculture principles in planning and planting vegetable gardens.

We made good examples of a swale bed on a contour and a vegetable garden for four. These examples can be copied in terms of design and companion plantings. We created a ‘mother’ bed with the variety of plants that Alex supplied. The idea with this bed is to provide cuttings for our own vegetable gardens.

Alex shows us how to build a ‘machine’ to identify levels across any ground

Many thanks to Konrad Stutterheim and Chesslin Micheals for agreeing to maintain these plants. If you would like to visit the gardens, please liase with Konrad or Chesslin.

We have much to be thankful for, especially:

  • Alex for her brilliant facilitation; pitching her knowledge to a very diverse group, keeping things fun and light while also driving us to complete. Alex also supported our initiative financially by charging a reduced rate for the workshop.
  • Shelly Kleyn Armistead for kindly and generously funding the project and Margaux Newdigate for sourcing and securing that support and funding.
  • Guy Tillim, Konrad Stutterheim and Lawrence Jones for providing the space as our base;
  • Ruth Loewenthal for helping with access to the kitchen and crockery.
  • Pieter Takkies of Bosheuwel for the manure.
  • Chesslin Michaels, Konrad and Guy for allowing us to use their gardens.
  • Our delegates. Friday and Saturdays are working days for many and the weather was very challenging. Everyone got stuck in and did what they could to make it a fun and productive two days.

For more info, please contact Rooken at


On Saturday we spent some time laying out the mother garden for planting our seedlings into.

Waste Management Road Show

Eden district municipality together with the seven (7) local municipalities are planning to host a waste management road show throughout the district as part of the draft waste minimisation strategy.

The aim of the road show is to create awareness throughout the district of waste management, minimisation and how each household can manage its own waste.

More details in the document attached here:BUSINESS PLAN WASTE MANAGEMENT ROADSHOW- 07 MARCH 2012[1]

Vermaaklikheid and Duiwenhoks Accomodation

The options include:

1) River Magic or tel (021) 701 3735.

2) Oshoek oshoekriverfarm or tel 083 419 4467

3) Koensrust or tel 083-290 1501

4) Paddahoek – contact John Stanbridge –

5) Accommodation at Restaurant – Farm Vermaaklikheid Portion 499/123, PO Box 21 Vermaaklikheid, 6671 Tel: 028-713-2255

6) Paddasang Farm – paddasangriverfarm

The Boating Bylaws for the Duiwenhoks River have been passed.

Boat registration for the Duiwenhoks is not required yet as the slipways are not registered.

The Duiwenhoks Estuary and its surrounds are one of the last remaining pristine estuaries in the country and the Duiwenhoks Conservancy has been established to preserve its unique character.

Biologists have long maintained that the most important role of the estuarine environment for fish is the provision of nursery grounds for juveniles. Estuaries provide a typically calm, sheltered environment where the higher temperatures and rich food supply allow rapid growth and protection for marine fish fry.

Below are a few guidelines to show how you can help to maintain the uniqueness of the area and ensure safety. We ask you to please bear these in mind during your stay.

The Duiwenhoks is not a skiing river.

Boats need to watch out for Swimmers and Canoes.

Slow Down when passing a Jetty!!

Please drive responsibly at all times with due consideration for the peaceful nature of the river, for houses, jettys, small craft and other users of the river.

Please observe the ‘Slow Zone’ or ‘No Wake Zone’ close to the Village.

When fishing:

Please make sure you have a license to fish or collect bait in the river
Spearfishing in the tidal areas is not permitted
Please stick to the size and bag limits for fish and bait
Cast nets/throw nets for fishing may not be used from sunset to sunrise.


Remember that when approaching an oncoming boat you must pass with the oncoming boat on your port (left) side, i.e. when traveling on the river keep right.

When overtaking another boat on the river please do so on their port side.

Please ensure, especially when passing a smaller or stationary boat on the river that your wake does not cause a danger to the other boat.

Remember – to avoid a collision a motor boat must give right of way to all other craft and a rowing boat or canoe gives way to a sailing boat.

When approaching jettys please be aware of swimmers and slow down if necessary. Many people practice long distance swimming in the river and they are difficult to spot from a fast moving boat.

Please keep at least 5 meters from the river bank when in motion in order to preserve the banks (there may also be children in the reeds!!)

When approaching the river bank please do so slowly.

No objects or people may be towed on the Duiwenhoks River (eg. no skiing or tubing).

When out at sea please remember you may not approach closer than 300 m to a whale.