I would like to start on a deeply personal note to say that my beloved husband and best friend
of 44 years, Herkie Sandenbergh, suddenly died from Covid on 2nd April this year. I am still
reeling from this event, but his death has also reinforced my passion for my work. As with
everyone when tragedy strikes and great loss hits you, one often feels like giving up on your
calling, Ministry and destiny. Our precious Ani Vileli team took the reins and kept the ministry
going during this sad and challenging time.
Just after his passing, I lay on my bed one night and felt the most refreshing feeling as if my
body, soul and spirit were being filled up from my feet to the top of my head. I heard the Lord
saying, “and I will even fill up the void Herkie left”. From that moment I strangely feel as if I
have been running with the horses… Now, when people ask me how I’m doing I hear myself
saying every time: Herkie is in Heaven, and I have no regrets.
He was our “girls” doctor, father, and our staunchest supporter so we all have some healing
that needs to take place.
There have been so many times in our lives that at the end of an Ani Vileli day we feel as
though we’ve sown the wind and reaped the whirlwind (Hosea 8:7) and so we’ve learned to
work in a tight team, in the counsel of the wise. We have also learned to love like Christ, this
love that can cover a multitude of sins. Our yes has become our yes and our no our no,
praying constantly in the spirit for wisdom and discernment as we work with these precious
daughters of Zion. And when I think of a whirlwind all I see is the filth and the rubbish being
whirled to heaven leaving a clean tilled land ready for the seed of God, the Word, bearing fruit
for all eternity, falling into this ground and producing a 100 fold crop… and this is the true
inheritance of the saints.
Looking back over the past 6 months we stand absolutely amazed at the leaps and bounds
that ANI VILELI has progressed with.
Here are some notable highlights:
We moved into THE SHED (revamped old bus shed) from the tiny Drop-in Centre in town; We
have added an extra day to our program; We ended the Covid year of 2020 with a big bang
fashion show. Thank you to all the support we got from the community of Tzaneen that helped
to make this event highly successful. Thank you from our team’s side to Shana, Charmaine
and Kirsten who helped us organise, sew, and create a morning to remember; Our planter,
rug and bag stock has proved to be a sell-out sensation and the girls are working hard at
home crocheting to keep our stocks going; All our lovely dresses and domestic uniforms
have been sold and some of our lovely stock went to Germany last month; One of the
highlights in our Ani Vileli family was a wedding! Julia married Jack early in December 2020 at
home affairs. This was like coming full circle for us. Both Jack and Julia are Born Again
believers setting a beautiful example for all the girls to follow.
One of our focus points is training our women to do sustainable vegetable gardening to feed
their families throughout the year and for an extra income. Another is training women to sew,
which involves a lot of risk taking, patience (babies on their backs etc) and maintenance
(machine technician costs). By God’s grace and amazing trainers, there are at least 10
women who are productive behind a sewing machine. Some of the items that have been
immensely popular are tulip dresses, doctors’ scrubs and domestic wear. Cooking and baking
scones and rusks in our “state of the art kitchen” also empowers the ladies. We are trusting
God for donor provision for 14 stoves and 12 more sewing machines.
In April we launched our reusable pad pack project and awareness programme. The girls in these
very rural areas sometimes spend ¼ of their year at home during their menstrual cycle. We
received a YES from four schools. With our brand new traffic-proof team to assist us, our goal is
to finish 500 pad packs. The cost to produce a pack is about R200 as we supply each person with
two panties, a washcloth and bar of soap as well as the reusable pad with 4 sleeves, a plastic bag
and lovely bag to put everything in. So please partner with us in this redeeming initiative and use
as ref “pads”. Thank you to Touching Africa for our industrial sewing and a great thank you to Piet
Barnard for bringing it to us all the way from Potch!
The local churches in Tzaneen have heroically come on board in full support of Ani Vileli and
adopted us as their extended family. Sylvie and I have stopped going out in the evenings to
minister to the girls because of COVID, but also the fact that the man who joined us has relocated
to Cape Town leaving us in a vulnerable position especially because pimp presence has
increased severely. Our girls have taken the baton, and each identified someone in prostitution in
the area where they live. They are mentoring these girls, ministering to them, feeding them, and
teaching them crochet etc.
What a joy it has been sharing this reality show with you. Where real life happens…the good the
bad and the lovely!!!! We are slowly moving from crisis management and intervention, which in
some form will always be with us, to women who are steady followers and disciples of the Lord
Jesus Christ…doers of the Word. And for this we are deeply and humbly indebted to our Lord and
Saviour for the miraculous work that he is doing in all our lives.
A deep and much appreciated thank you to all our supporters, prayer partners and donors who
have faithfully stuck with us through thick and thin and still believe that what we are doing is worth
it and worthy of supporting. God bless you richly and prosper you in all you do.
Standard Bank of S.A. Ltd.
Account Name: Tzaneen Community Fourm
Reference: Ani Vileli
Account no.: 134221958