News & Events


Come and join us for a fun evening of wine, poetry and music

Zulu crafts for sale which make super Christmas presents, or join us for a glass of wine and listen to the music,

Love to see you there!

Family Charity Bowling Sunday May 7th

Join us for a fun afternoon of bowling in the park.  Bring the family and learn how to bowl.  Didsbury Park from 1pm.  Practice first for an hour and then the competition begins!

£10 per person includes afternoon tea

Prizes, tombola and lots of fun!


contact Sonia:  07900 273774

The African Vine Committee

This is Pat with the African Vine Committee.  These three young people are members of the Vine family.  Derrick, Nonkululeko and Siyabonga are all university graduates who have gone through our programme and want to give something back.  They understand better than anybody the problems of being an orphan and trying to find your place in the world. In their own works "You can delegate to us".  In our absence they are the contacts for the children.  We are so proud of them. 

Nail and Hand Workshop

In October, A'dell a beautician and one of our committee members, came out to the project to run a manicure workshop.  The youngsters learnt all the aspects of hand and nail care.  They thoroughly enjoyed it.  They all received a certificate to show they had learnt a new skill and some of them already have clients and are earning some extra cash.   

The Vine Project's Poet in Residence



Jolivia, who is a Manchester based poet, has become very interested in the Vine Project. Having listened to the stories of the children and the way our  project runs, she has written 5 poems for us. They are very moving and poignant pieces, exactly portraying what the charity is all about.  In June she has been chosen as poet of the month by a publishing group. We are thrilled to have her involvement.

They will be sold as a pack of 5 notelets, each with a different poem and picture costing £4 per pack. 



We give this award each year in the memory of Guiseppe Orsini who was a great supporter of our project.  It is given in two catagories, Cyril (Sbusisi Mkabela) received it for academic excellence.  He passed his Matric at Batchelor's Level allowing him to go to University where he's doing a degree in Zoology.  The second award is for help in the community.This was given to Derrick Makhanya who having been supported by us for a number of years, is now helping the younger Vine members in the township.  Specifically doing workshops to help them fill out their CAO forms needed for university and college entrance.   

Well done to both Cyril and Derrick, they are wonderful role models for our project.

Inaugural Meeting of the South African Vine Committee

We are so pleased that 3 local people, who work with and support our project, have agreed to become voluntary members of our South African Committee.  From their own experiences they understand the problems that the children face.  Their input will be invaluable to us.  We will meet with them twice a year whenever we visit. Dr Vincent Mthethwa is a local headmaster with years of experience in schools, Maureen Makhathini is a local teacher looking after children with specific problems, and Derrick Makhanya is one of the youngsters who Vine has been supporting over the years and is now finishing his degree at University.  We look forward to working with them all.

Christmas Outing

When Sonia and Viv visited in Sept/October 2015 they took 27 of the Vine children for a Christmas treat to the cinema.  They took the local bus in groups, met together at the Mall in Richards Bay and enjoyed a movie followed by burger and chips.  For some of them this was their first trip to the cinema.  The outing was sponsored by one of our firm supporters in South Africa and was certainly a day out to remember.  

Finding Employment

Norton Rose Fulbright have always supported us and once again they've come up trumps.  Two of their lawyers in the Durban office have been mentoring two of our final year University students.  Sfiso, who is studying Accountancy and Ntokozo, who is studying Geography and Environmental Studies have spent time in the office discussing interview techniques, CVs, and presentation, with a view to finding employment for next year.  The photo shows Sfiso prior to an interview getting last minute advice.  As a result Ntokozo has got a job offer in the Eshowe municipality and Sfiso feels very positive about his future.

Many thanks to Johnny and Malcolm from the Durban office for all their help.    

Phumlani, Our First Graduate

Earlier this year Phumlani Gumede was our first student to graduate from University.  He got his degree in transport and logistics.  It was not easy for him and we are very proud of him.  He is now working in Pietermaritzburg in transport policy and planning with a four year contract.  Wonderful!

He wrote us an email of gratitude and thanks in which he said " I have been waiting for this moment and finally I'm here sitting in my own office with my own phone number and my own email address.  It is unbelievable but it has happened and it is all thanks to the Vine Project"