Earthchild Project 10 Year Anniversary Celebration

“It’s hard to believe that this time 10 years ago the very first seeds of Earthchild Project began to sprout. Three young ladies with a big idea and lots of energy and passion started out in two Cape Town schools. It’s been quite a journey with many lessons, challenges, highlights, connections and growth… and a journey full of the gift of working with thousands of very special children. This journey would not have been possible without YOUR support and the incredible ‘eco-system’ of relationships that have developed over the years. We would like to say a very big THANK YOU to our donors, partners, teachers, schools and volunteers… it has been a privilege working with you all and we are deeply grateful for your ongoing love and support.”

– Janna Kretzmar, Founder and Director, Earthchild Project

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After School Club: Empowerment in South Africa

Adults cannot deny the challenge of expressing emotions during the physiological, emotional, & mental changes of puberty. With the After School Young Girl’s club, Earthchild project hopes to ease the emotional turbulence for the 5th/ 6th grade girls at Harmony & Sakumlendela Primary. The girls club focuses on promoting positive identity development through self-compassion, non-violent communication & relationship building.

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This program is led by the three outstanding gap year  interns: Asemahle, Sonwabise (Soso), & Sikelelwa (Sikie) who  were also apart of the girls club and recall it’s relevance during their  formative years. “Young girls club is  a space to talk about anything, even though it could be difficult to open up,” Sikie.

The interns’ confident demeanor influences the young girls to voice their opinions & feel comfortable in their own bodies. Asemahle declares,“ The young girl’s club allows them to feel free to be themselves.” Witnessing this comfort & liberation is a radical act of self-love, as young girls & women often receive damaging information about “standards” of beauty & gender-specific behavior.

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Celebrating & listening to peers allows young girls to value the unique gifts of others, without a negative consequence on their own self-worth. Therefore, sharing quality time with peers allows the group to build support & trust in friendship. It’s believed that the less we judge others, the more we connect to our own capacity for healthy relationships. More importantly, support groups facilitate the movement toward empowerment & deep connection.

Each program at ECP cultivates & develops life skills that will continue long into adulthood. As the young girls club also contributes directly to the ECP mission, it has a distinguished ability to address & prevent issues regarding behavioral, emotional, or mental concerns that may arise at school. Impressed by the momentum & enthusiasm of the girls club, ECP Founder/Director suggests, “We need to start a boys club soon.”

Dominique Camille is an Earthchild project intern working in the schools and the office. She is a yoga teacher from the San Francisco Bay Area deeply committed to social justice and liberating expression. 

The Rewards of Seva: Selfless Service

What is Seva?

Seva is a Sanskrit word meaning selfless service and it is one of the paths of yoga.  However, it is sometimes overlooked in the western expression of yoga.  Doing service can be an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling experience.  It nurtures a way of being in the world which constantly asks the question: “how can I help, how can I make a difference, how can I be of service?” Read more

Why Share the Love of Yoga

We all know that there are many physical, emotional, mental and spiritual benefits to a regular yoga practice.  However, after seven years of teaching thousands of children, we are seeing another powerful way yoga is impacting their lives…

For many of the children in Khayelitsha  and Lavender Hill, their weekly yoga class is the only access they have to a safe, nurturing and supportive space.  This gives them an opportunity to connect deeply with themselves and cultivate a real sense of self confidence and awareness.  In addition, for many of these children, their Earthchild yoga teacher is the only person who tells them they believe in them and encourages them to dream big.  Read more

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