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HOME living informed today

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A WORD FROM THE

EDITOR

I

amused myself by reading some epic ‘fails’ as they are termed, when autocorrect suddenly steps into your communication and corrects words you painstakingly spent time spelling out and not abbreviating. Whilst this mobile phone technology has driven me quite crazy at times, the results of some autocorrects have been nothing short of rollon-the-floor hilarious. This got me thinking about the power of words and how, when a word is used in the wrong context, what craziness ensues. And like the cycle of my mind this made me think of things we ‘believe’ in and why we hold these beliefs so dear. Beliefs are just entrenched opinions and are highly dependent on the context of what we knows and understand, as well as where we were born, our gender, our ethnicity, and so on. In other words, beliefs are highly subjective, yet they act as defined driving forces for people’s behaviour. The most highly spiritual people are governed by love and acceptance of their fellow humans and a deep compassion for those in pain or those who are struggling. As I look around the world at the power plays that are causing such deep divides amongst countries and factions and religions, it leads to a point of despair at times, because as long as people fight about what is right it will inevitably lead to actions that are without doubt wrong. This festive season, spread cheer and genuine goodwill amongst all people, be the change you wish to see in the world and act with a conscience in regard to what you buy. Starting a chain reaction of ‘goodness’ can only benefit you and the world around you and leave no words to mix up. Happy holidays and happy reading.

Melissa EDITOR MANAGING EDITOR AND DESIGNER DIVISIONAL HEAD OF SALES SALES EXECUTIVEs PROJECT MANAGER SUB-EDITOR CLIENT LIAISON MANAGER CLIENT LIAISON OFFICER EDITORIAL DIRECTORS

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DISTRIBUTION MANAGER ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES PRINTER

Melissa Baird Nicole Kenny Annie Pieters Elna Willemse, Gail Marais, Zaida Yon Esther Kabaso Sarah Johnston Eunice Visagie Linda Tom nicole.kenny@alive2green.com Gordon Brown, Lloyd Macfarlane, Andrew Fehrsen Chevonne Ismail www.alive2green.com www.greenhomemagazine.co.za Cape Media House, 28 Main Rd, Rondebosch. TEL: 021 447 4733 FAX: 086 694 7443 2006/206388/23 4130252432 First Published July 2011 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any way or in any form without the prior written consent of the publisher. The opinions expressed herein are not necessarily those of the publisher or the editor. All editorial contributions are accepted on the understanding that the contributor either owns or has obtained all necessary copyrights and permissions. Publishers do not endorse claims by advertisers. Space limitations and source format have affected the size of certain published images and/or diagrams in this publication. For larger PDF versions of these images please contact the Publisher. Edward MacDonald, distribution@alive2green.com sales@alive2green.com FA Print

PUBLISHER

G R E E N HOME

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CONTENTS

December/January 2014

THE DIY ISSUE

9 14

11 14 21 22 24

29 9

26 29 30 33 35

DIY GIFT IDEAS upcycling the old into new homemade gifts LANDSCAPES what to plant this summer LOFTY AMBITIONS giving new life to an old loft KNOW IT grey and black water recycling PRODUCTS useful, worthwhile and natural selections BOOKS meteors, animal stories and craft beers TRAVEL five beautiful coastal hiking trails ADVENTURE SPORTS deep sea kayaking FUTURE LEADERS entrepreneurs’ tips for going it alone GAME CHANGERS celebrating the permaculture gardeners of the future RENEWABLE ENERGY solar energy round-up and fossil fuel divestment

Subscribe & Win Be responsible; be inspired! Locally based company Treemendous Gifts has found the perfect way to advertise your pledge to a more eco-aware world with its unique corporate gifts. Indigenous live saplings housed in fully recyclable tubes are the perfect gift idea for the carbon-conscious consumer. Ten lucky, new subscribers to Green Home Magazine stand a chance to win a Treemendous sapling. Enter via the website: www.alive2green.com/ghm-subscriptions Entries close on 28 November 2014 and the winner is selected via a lucky draw.

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G R E E N HOME

5


100

COMMIT TED TO SUSTAINABILIT Y We love sustainability, it’s such a great word to use. It makes us look amazing. We put it on everything – even our packaging. We love it. Sustainability.

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2014/06/23 2:45 PM


DIY Gift ideas T

  he holiday season is dubbed the “silly season”, for obvious reasons. It is a time for celebration and family. It can also be very taxing on your pocket in terms of gifting. This year, give gifts that are easy on the pocket, beautiful and that your friends and family will appreciate. By using old and discarded items around the house, you can achieve the above without spending a fortune. BY Lizl Naude

DIY tie necklace I am sure many of our fathers’ closets are overflowing with unused ties they’ve received as a gift on some birthday or Father’s Day. Some of them date from the 1970s and are truly an eyesore. There is a way to bring them right back to life and the cool thing about it is…then you can wear them! What you need: –– An old tie (preferably no print) –– Vintage button –– Needle and thread This one is a little tricky and requires some needlework. Gently fold the tie as per the picture and temporarily pin each layer. Use the needle and thread to secure it. To finish it off, add the vintage button on the lower section.

DIY picture frame tray Chances are you are expecting some visitors for the holidays. You might have your parents over and you would like to surprise them with breakfast in bed. Use an old picture frame and turn it into a beautiful tray from which to serve them and make them feel extra special. What you need: –– Big square picture frame (with glass still intact) –– Beautiful fabric in the same size –– Handles –– Cordless drill and screws

DIY Christmas crackers

This is a beautiful and thoughtful gift to give to a friend who has invited you for lunch or dinner. Christmas crackers can be expensive when store-bought. They can be easily duplicated and made right at home. What you need: –– Toilet roll cylinders –– Old magazine pages (preferaSand down the picture frame bly quality paper) to reveal some of the old paint- –– Trinkets and little favours work. Use the handles and meas- –– Ribbon ure where you need to drill the holes to secure the handles to Start by tearing out pages from the frame. When done, slide the an unused magazine. Fill the toilet glass into place. Then, neatly lay roll holder with the preferred the fabric on the glass and cover favour or trinket. Fold the page with the backboard. It’s easy and over the toilet roll and close each your family will love you for it! end tightly with the ribbon. As easy as that!

www.greenhomemagazine.co.za

TALKINGGARBAGE

GIVE A GIFT THAT GROWS THIS SEASON FIVE GREEN-FINGERED GIFT IDEAS FOR THE SEASON: 1. SUCCULENTS Tough, hardy, beautiful. South Africa is blessed with a wealth of fantastic indigenous succulents. They’re a great gift to bring a bit of life into a home or workspace without needing too much love and attention. Succulents are excellent for those who haven’t yet coloured their fingers completely green, but would love a bit of plant life to call their own. 2. INDOOR PLANTS Indoor plants are a simple and effective way to green up inside spaces. Ferns, delicious monsters and other indoor plants are perfect for apartments or rooms that need a little bit of greenery added. Not only can they add beautiful aesthetic elements to indoor spaces, but indoor plants have been proven to improve air quality and peace of mind in homes. 3. HEIRLOOM SEEDS A selection of heirloom seeds is a great way to give someone who already has green fingers a special opportunity to grow unique and beautiful crops that are locally relevant and resilient. 4. A DIY PLANTING KIT A planting kit is a great way to get someone growing who is interested in experimenting with growing vegetables or other plants but is stuck on the hump of getting started. Include the essentials like compost, potting soil, seedlings and a planting box, but why not include some organic fertiliser, a book on vegetable gardening and some small gardening tools to take the gift to the next level? 5. A SUBSCRIPTION to a local community-supported agriculture project. This is a fantastic way to keep your loved ones healthy while supporting local sustainable agriculture at the same time. Community supported agriculture projects typically deliver a box of fresh organic vegetables weekly or monthly to your area and are a great addition to any weekly shopping.

G R E E N HOME

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CHOOSE A MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION WHEN YOU SUBSCRIBE TO ANY OF OUR TITLES! MINIMUM MONDAY − SATURDAY SUBSCRIPTION

For more information & to subscribe, call 0860 32 62 62 or E-mail: gautengsubs@inl.co.za or sms the words STAR (space) MAG followed by your NAME to 45607. R1-50 per sms Terms & conditions apply.

independent THE

SUNDAY


LANDSCAPES

DECEMBER & JANUARY PLANTING GUIDELINES December and January in South Africa are our full-blown summer months, with long hot days, heavy summer rains in the summer rainfall areas, and no rain at all in the winter rainfall regions. It can be quite a challenging month in the garden as garden pests have had an opportunity to proliferate, sweltering conditions can cause plants to wither or bolt, and water is a scarce resource in many parts of the country. However, the summer months present a great opportunity to catch up on your garden maintenance; fix the broken hinge on the shed, paint your greenhouse, repair your cold frame and straighten up your pathways and bed borders. It is also a good time to plan ahead. Spend time outside reading up on what to plant in the coming months. It can be a slow time for planting out due to the heat, but as the months move on you can start thinking about planning your autumn crops. That said, your summer garden can be very productive if planted right, watered well, and offered protection from too much sun. Erect a simple shade netting over your garden to protect heatsensitive plants from the heat of the day. Mulch your garden well to conserve moisture and water in the very early mornings or late afternoons to reduce evaporation losses. It’s also a good time to propagate cuttings, feed your garden, pruning dead branches and removing spent plants. You can harvest tomatoes daily as they ripen, as well as cucumbers, courgettes and potatoes. Transplant cabbage, cauliflower, beets and spinach into the ground and sow beetroots, broccoli, carrots, onions and lettuces directly into the soil.

www.greenhomemagazine.co.za

BY Matthew Koehorst

DECEMBER PLANTING CHART Crop

Time for Seedlings to Emerge (days)

Time to Harvest (weeks)

ROOT CROPS

3-20

5-20

Carrot

10-20

8-14

Radish

3-5

5-8

LEAF CROPS

6-21

8-20

Lettuce

8-10

10-14

Cabbage

6-10

10-16

Cauliflower

6-10

10-16

Broccoli

6-10

10-16

NZ Spinach

14-21

10

FRUIT CROPS

6-14

8-20

Tomato

10-14

12-20

Pepper

10-14

14-16

Chilli

10-14

14-16

Aubergine

10-14

14-16

Cucumber

6-10

16-20

Pumpkin

6-10

14-17

Squash

6-10

10-12

Marrow

6-10

JANUARY PLANTING CHART Crop

Time for Seedlings to Emerge (days)

Time to Harvest (weeks)

12-16

ROOT CROPS

3-20

5-20

10-20

8-14

Mielies

7-10

11-12

Carrot

Melon

6-10

14-16

Radish

3-5

5-8

Potato Tubers

21-28

16-20

Beetroot

10-14

10

Leek

10-14

16-20

Sweet Potato

-

18-20

LEGUMES

7-10

10-18

LEAF CROPS

6-21

8-20

8-10

10-14

Climbing beans

7-10

10-12

Lettuce

Bush beans

7-10

10-12

Cabbage

6-10

10-16

Kale

6-10

8-10

Broccoli

6-10

10-16

Morog

14-21

10

FRUIT CROPS

6-14

8-20

Kohlrabi

6-10

8-10

LEGUMES

7-10

10-18

Climbing beans

7-10

10-12

Bush beans

7-10

10-12

G R E E N HOME

9


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are inspected and sorted according to colour and material. The sorted bottles are washed and then conveyed to a granulator, where they are reduced to flakes before being screened. These flakes are then washed and dried and conveyed to an extruder where the material is turned into pellets. The finished product takes the form of small clear pellets, which are supplied to end-users for production into a number of everyday household items, including the Think Green Insulation sheets that A.G. Ismail supplies and installs. The demand for recycled products A prevailing demand for polyester fibre continues to provide the most economic end-use for South African recycled PET, and demand currently exceeds supply. In South Africa, Gauteng generates the most PET postconsumer products at 55% of the national total, followed by the Western Cape with 13%. Recycling one ton of plastic bottles saves 1,5 tons of CO2 versus landfill or incineration processes. More than 1,4 billion PET bottles have been recycled in South Africa to date.

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G R E E N HOME

11


Lofty

AMBITIONS

This creative couple’s modern-vintage apartment in downtown Cape Town is the result of a great collaboration with their architects, and reflects their personal style and the historic street where they live.

TEXT Nikki Benatar PRODUCTION/ STYLING Sven Alberding PHOTOGRAPHS Greg Cox

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www.greenhomemagazine.co.za


LIVING

B

ia van Deventer and David Anderson’s apartment in Cape Town’s East City precinct is the stuff loft-living dreams are made of – a light, airy, open-plan space with high ceilings, huge windows, heritage architectural features and close proximity to a buzzy street life. But their dream home wasn’t always quite so covetable. It took a judicious architectural intervention (by Every People Office), a city-improvement initiative (namely Cape Town World Design Capital 2014) and Bia and David’s complementary decorating styles to make it into the warm, comfortable, contemporary and highly sought after property it is today. Bia, 33, a graphic designer, recalls the day she and David, 29, an environmental lawyer by day and music producer by night, first heard about the apartment in Cape Town’s East City precinct – which was, at the time, a less-than-desirable neighbourhood. ‘We were reluctant to view the place because it was downtown,’ recalls David. ‘The agent had to persuade us,’ he continues, ‘but the second we walked into this room we were sold.’ The ‘room’ he’s referring to is the expansive entrance hall/lounge area/ TV nook, with its capacious proportions, original red-brick walls, wooden floors, and massive windows on the other end. ‘I was drawn to the story inside the bricks,’ says Bia. ‘The arches and pieces of granite hinted at past lives; David loved the mix of steel, timber and bricks. And we both privately dreamed of living in a flat with a ceiling beam, though neither of us had ever verbalised it to each other. It was everything we ever wanted – all squished into one apartment.’

I WAS DRAWN TO THE STORY INSIDE THE BRICKS.... THE ARCHES AND PIECES OF GRANITE HINTED AT PAST LIVES.

Top: The roomy living area is flanked by an original red-brick wall on the one side and a sleek, contemporary ‘wall of cupboards’ on the other, with mid-century modern armchairs completing the look. Left: Bia and David were intrigued by the ‘stories inside the bricks’. Their apartment – once home to a sewing factory, ad agency and, later, a gym – has had many lives.

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G R E E N HOME

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LIVING

Clockwise: David’s impressive vinyl collection, retro cameras and analogue recording equipment are housed in two vintage bookshelves, which David bought at an auction in Cape Town. Bia and David went for contemporary basins, taps and bathroom cabinets, which complement the period bath. The bathroom, as seen from the kitchen, is separated from the bedroom by a plywood ‘wall’, which doubles as a headboard in the master bedroom and is part of the single piece of joinery.

With regard to the neighbourhood, Bia was aware that plans were underway to uplift the entire area, as part of the Cape Town World Design Capital 2014. ‘But it was still a big leap of faith,’ she explains, ‘because the area still looked grimy before Truth HQ opened,’ she says, referring to the trendy coffee shop across the way from their apartment that’s been the site of many local and international fashion shoots. Less than a year and a half later, the area’s already enjoying a mini growth spurt, with ad agencies, design studios and other young creatives flocking to the area to live and work. When it came to an architectural intervention to transform the existing space into a work-from-home studio big enough to accommodate both of them, with a spacious bedroom, a bathroom with a separate toilet, and a kitchen that could fit a dining table (‘like the one in [Bia’s] grandma’s house’), the couple did not want to work with ‘run-of-the-mill’ architects. ‘We chose EPO because they are very creative and, like us, they were excited by the challenge of coming up with a fresh, never-seen-before solution.’ EPO’s Michael Lumby explains their intervention: ‘The studio’s height restriction – less than four metres – didn’t allow us to create two full floors, so we produced a single piece of joinery that doubles as a wall, cupboards and

14

G R E E N HOME

a mezzanine office space.’ EPO’s James Pierre du Plessis adds, ‘Although it’s a mammouth piece of furniture, it’s intimate and flexible. The “walls” become the corridors, allowing you to move around to the bedroom, bathroom or kitchen easily.’ The result is a super-slick, all-white façade that’s not only utterly practical, but also acts as a blank canvas to showcase the apartment’s period features (like the brickwork, ceiling beams and wooden floors). ‘We didn’t want to mess with the building’s existing shell,’ explains James, ‘so we kept this piece entirely separate; it never touches the walls.’ The cohesiveness of the interiors would have you believe that Bia and David have similar decorating styles. ‘Not really,’ laughs Bia. ‘We both appreciate vintage style, but I prefer a cleaner, whiter, more neutral palette, while David’s taste is more retro, with his vintage cameras, vinyl collection, analogue music equipment and junkshop finds. ‘It’s interesting, everyone who comes in here thinks it’s one style, but we’ve definitely got our areas.’Then she adds: ‘I’m actually quite proud of us that we’ve worked through it and haven’t got stuck in the tiniest details. It’s a perfect combination, there’s enough space for us both to play.’ everypeopleoffice.com, 073 731 8129 biavandeventer.com

www.greenhomemagazine.co.za


LIVING

WATER SAVING TIPS IF YOU LIVE IN A LOFT BY Jess Handley

1. Installing water-efficient taps and showerheads You can reduce your daily water requirement by up to 60%: by installing a sophisticated flow limiter, special jets and the admixture of air. The technical idea behind this innovation is that air is drawn into the water stream creating tiny bubbles, which does not affect the pressure of the shower but helps reduce the amount of water used significantly.

2. Water-efficient toilets In order to save water when flushing the toilet, you can exchange your regular toilet for a low-flushing one, which only requires four litres of water to flush compared to the regular six.

3. Catch cold water When opening the tap for hot water, catch the initial cold water flow in a jug and use it to water your plants.

Clockwise from above: The sun streams into Bia and David’s kitchen through a pair of large windows. The white tiles and plywood are a perfect foil for the Victorian bath. The apartment takes on a different personality when the sun goes down.

4. Flow-restrictor valves Although they may not be the most appealing thing to install, they will definitely help one reduce the amount of water used when doing simple things such as washing the dishes or mopping the floor. The idea is to not only restrict the amount of water one uses when doing household chores, but to help monitor water usage as well as the most important thing: saving on your water bill!

5. Water recycling The water that is used to boil an egg or steam vegetables is the same water that can be used to wash the dishes or water the plants. Often water is thrown down the sink before it has reached its full using potential; and since water goes through six stages of cleaning at water purification plants such as Rand Water, it would be thoughtful to use it before losing it.

6. Bath with a friend Or drink wine instead of water, it’s par for the course in any case.

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G R E E N HOME

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Distributed in South Africa by: Liebherr-Africa (Pty) Limited Contact 011 365 2561/2/3 or visit our website www.liebherr-appliances.co.za


ActiveGreen technology and energy efficiency are synonymous with the Liebherr brand Liebherr puts environmental-friendliness first in both product design and manufacture of all our refrigerators and freezers. • • •

In 1993 Liebherr was the first manufacturer to convert our entire appliance range to HCFC/CFC-free refrigerants. Heat generated during manufacturing processes is recycled and reused All sheet metal is finished with environmentally friendly powder coatings which do not damage the environment

In addition, energy efficiency is a priority and influences all we do from the earliest design phase on. Appliance energy consumption has been continually reduced by constantly developing even more sophisticated electronics and refrigeration systems. A case in point is our GTP range of chest freezers which feature • • •

super-efficient A+++ energy ratings StopFrost technology and provides for extended storage periods at perfectly frozen temperatures during power failures – up to 110 hours for the GTP2356 (shown).


precious

KNOWIT

TOO

TO WASTE

BY Anita George-Kuhn

HOW IT WORKS IF YOU LIVE ON A SMALLHOLDING OR FARM

C

lean, fresh water – our planet’s life essence – needs a new management strategy to replace the current solution for wastewater treatment that often leads to foul water being pumped directly into the rivers and seas we depend so heavily upon. Water use in water-scarce South Africa is going to be ever more hotly contested, with agriculture, mining and the coal-fired energy we depend on all relying heavily on fresh water to function. The failing wastewater treatment plants and un-maintained water delivery infrastructure also contribute to thousands of litres being wasted every day. So, using clean, fresh water to flush our toilets is really an unsustainable practice we need to stop doing. Wasting water can also cost you a small fortune (ask anyone who has had a shock bill from their municipality for a water leak they did not even know existed). What are the options available to us as consumers who want to do what we can not to add to the already overwhelming problem

DID YOU KNOW: Approximately 70% of our earth’s surface is covered with water, but only 3% is fresh water, the other

97% being salt water.

of water delivery? Simple – find a solution that can treat and recycle your domestic wastewater and enable you to re-use it for your garden, flushing toilets and even drinking – depending on the technology you choose. This means households with limited water access can be reassured of a constant supply of water that can be re-used and offers solutions for big housing estates and office blocks. If we recycled just the wastewater and re-used the treated water to flush the toilets of office blocks every day, think of how many thousands of litres of fresh water would be saved. Rural communities in desperate need of sanitation solutions can benefit from toilets that only use recycled domestic wastewater and this will have a significant reduction from the health risks associated with environmental and groundwater pollution. Some wastewater treatment options offer an element of social upliftment with their solutions and opportunities for job creation, skills transfer and training in rural communities, where wastewater plants which treat and recycle domestic wastewater are installed and serviced. Leading the way in this full circle service delivery is Enviro Conscious Technologies – the Southern African Partner for (SBR) AQUAmax® Wastewater Treatment Systems.

Benefits: –– Save up to 40% of natural fresh water resources –– Sustainable, cost-saving sanitation –– Reduce health risks –– Prevent environmental and groundwater pollution

The principle of a Sequence Batch Reactor (SBR) AQUAmax® small wastewater treatment plant is as simple as it is efficient: the wastewater runs out of your domestic connection directly into the tank in your garden, rather than into the municipal sewer system. The domestic wastewater is then treated biologically in four phases in two-four tanks over an eight-hour cycle period. No chemicals are needed. 1) Charging phase: water is collected and primary settlement occurs in first tank. 2) Treatment phase: water is aerated and stirred for six hours, breaking down the nitrogen 3) Settling Phase: activated sludge settles at the bottom of the tank. 4) Removal Phase: the clarified water is pumped out of the plant going through the UV-Steriliser. (Incidentally this process is far better than the current legal legal requirements for treated wastewater). Once clarification is over, the sterilised water comes out of the tank automatically and can be re-used as needed, creating a cycle of water re-use and purification, akin to the hydrological process already in place on this planet. The only thing is with the amount of pollutants being ‘thrown away’ into water it is becoming increasingly difficult for the natural water systems to do a proper job of cleaning up the wastewater before it enters the sea again. In rural areas the lack of adequate sanitation impacts many social development issues like education, health and nutrition. Building toilets that don’t rely on fresh water improves living conditions and removes the need for foul-smelling chemical pit latrines.

For more information on the wastewater treatment system email hendrik@envirocontech.co.za or hendrik@wasteh2osolutions.co.za www.greenhomemagazine.co.za

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LIVEWELL

Product SHOWCASE THE GIFTS THAT KEEP ON GIVING As everyone in the western world will know, the festive season is a time to relax, take stock, and celebrate with one’s family. It is also the time when you find yourself eating leftovers for three weeks and being the recipient of gifts that you do not need or would rather exchange for something else. In order to avoid the “thank you, this is perfect,” mixed with a hint of disappointment when presenting loved ones with their gifts this Christmas, take a look at some of the useful presents we’ve identified. The idea is that these funky, practical gifts are things that can be used for a long period of time. COMPILED BY Melissa Baird and Jess Handley

Solar charger In some of our previous issues, we have explored the notion of smart phones not being so smart as their batteries have a very short life span before you have to plug them into a charger. We recommended investing in a solar charger (which in our opinion is still first prize) but if you and your loved ones find yourself in the Northern hemisphere this winter where ample amounts of sun are but a myth, one of the most useful gifts is arguably a key ring phone charger. Light, durable and compact, this charger can be taken anywhere. Even if you aren’t in a sun scarce place this festive season, no one can argue that this would not be a useful gift to have. This charger can be purchased and shipped from: www.mophie.com/shop/mophie-reserve-micro-smartphones

Consol lanterns These lanterns by Consol are not just pretty, but rather a combination of elements that make them a really super gift. Firstly, they are solar powered, which means never having to replace a battery or finding the right plug socket to get them to glow. Secondly, the jars are all used ones that would either have been thrown away or (hopefully) recycled but instead have been given a second chance to be useful. Thirdly, they can hang just about anywhere and will make a great addition to the garden, living room or veranda. Not to mention they are extremely fun to play with as their mechanism is magnetic.

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Cuisineart smart stick Delicious delights such as humus, smoothies, yoghurt, or anything that requires a sharp swirling blade that you covet can also be made at home using this amazing hand blender. What differentiates this little gadget from ordinary blenders is that ordinary blenders are heavy, a mission to clean, require lots of bells and whistles in order to make them work; and did we mention that they are a mission to clean? Hand blenders are the way of the future. They can be taken anywhere, used on just about anything that needs blending (we wouldn’t recommend blending ice or anything that is too hard) and they come in a large variety of colours and styles.

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LIVEWELL Beaucience

ZestDesk If you have a loved one who travels a lot, or if you simply want a ‘from me to me’ gift this Christmas, invest in a ZestDesk. It’s a chic, portable standing desk – an adjustable device that turns any table into a standing desk. Created by Peter and James Moore, the ZestDesk neatly folds down into a carrying case with a handle, making it an ideal space-saving solution for those who hot desk or work from a shared table. Apart from being extremely nifty, this desk has a built in lectern that allows you to look at your laptop or tablet at eye level, allowing your back and neck a rest from hunching over. If you’re a back pain sufferer or get stiff shoulders from leaning over a desk, this is a fabulous gift. You can purchase and ship your ZestDesk from: http://zestdesk.com/

Beaucience (pronounced bo-ci-ons) is a proudly South African professional skincare brand specifically focusing on using natural formulations and organic ingredients where possible. The key ingredient is the unique peptide Proteasyl (derived from the pea plant) and this is combined with essential oils offering a product targeting the effects of ageing skin in both men and women. The products don’t contain parabens, are not tested on animals and are fragranced using natural essential oils. Beaucience Men’s Range Includes: –– Aftershave Balm – R119.99 –– Anti-Wrinkle Moisturising Cream – R129.99 –– Protective Moisturising SPF15 Cream – R149.99 –– Facial Wash – R59.99 –– Facial Scrub – R69.95 –– Face & Body Revitalising Lotion – R59.99 Beaucience – 021 709 0362, www.beaucience.co.za or Zando.co.za and Spree.co.za

Down to Earth African Potato extract has potent anti-inflammatory properties and is rich in sterols, which researchers have found greatly enhance the functioning of T-cells, and regulate and strengthens the immune system. The range, created by a South African medical herbalist, is aimed at people who suffer from muscle and joint pain and auto-immune associated symptoms, skin conditions and abrasions. –– African Potato Cream – a deep penetrating topical anti-inflammatory used to treat symptoms associated with arthritic pain, muscle pain, psoriasis, sun-damage and more. 250ml @ R179 | 125ml @ R102 –– Clear Skin Gel – a topical antiseptic used to treat bacterial and fungal infections, skin affected by acne, irritations and wounds, delivering potent healing and care for stressed skin. 125ml @ R102 | 50ml @ R59 –– Revive Moisturiser – a day and night cream made of natural ingredients, designed to provide protection and restorations for weakened or mature skin. | 50ml @ R110 See www.downtoearthcare.co.za for outlets and to shop online.

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Red rhino – scarves wrapping up the wilderness Founded by Elizabeth Folgen and Frances Crowe, Red Rhino has created a unique range of African inspired scarves that are inspired by the concept of ‘wilderness’. In this first collection there are various impressions of the wild as interpreted by artists and photographers like Josie Borain, including one carrying the motto of respected conservationist, John Hanks: “Listen, learn, improvise, adapt, and overcome, but above all remain optimistic and enthusiastic.” Lapapala Wilderness School in Limpopo is the sole benefactor of all net profits from the sale of the scarves. www.redrhinodesign.org

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SHELFTALK

ur books for this edition were chosen with the summer holidays in mind – whether you are staying at home or travelling to another part of the country. Is coffee your favourite beverage? There is a book about some great local coffee houses. Do you prefer your brew to be of a different kind? Have a look at the guide to local breweries. If you are planning to spend time in the field, a book on snakes and snakebites could come in handy. For those who enjoy spending time under the stars at night and seeing ‘shooting stars’, there is a new book about meteorites. We also feature some holiday reading for the youngsters.

NO MATTER HOW BUSY YOU MAY THINK YOU ARE, YOU MUST FIND TIME FOR READING, OR SURRENDER YOURSELF TO SELF-CHOSEN IGNORANCE.

Books etc. O

— Confucius

Coffee Culture – The South African Coffee-Lover’s Bible Coffee lovers delight in discovering great places to enjoy a cup or mug of coffee. Whether you are a coffee snob insisting on a specific blend, are an aspiring home barista, or simply want to go where the taste is as good as the aroma, this is a good book as gift for a friend – or yourself. Although it does not pretend to be a comprehensive directory of every good coffee shop in the country, the guide covers establishments in all nine provinces. Described for each featured coffee shop is its vibe, types of coffee business hours, kinds of meals offered and whether they have a loyalty programme. It briefly reviews some of their coffees, and notes special features such as whether the shop is dog friendly, has Wi-Fi (important for those who use their favourite coffee shop as a part-time office!), sells books (after all, what is better than reading a good book while enjoying a well-brewed cup of coffee?) or has outdoor seating available. Maps pinpointing all the featured shops, detailed contact information and GPS coordinates will help you find your way easily. Also included by coffee-loving author Peter Primich are details about local green bean and equipment importers, and background information about how coffee is made and enjoyed all over the world. ISBN 978-1-77026-625-4, Map Studio

Craft Beer: A guide to South African Craft Breweries and Brewers South Africans know how to enjoy a cool beer on a summer’s evening. But many of us know little about the background to the local beer industry – and especially about the smaller, boutique brands. The history of beer-brewing in South Africa dates back to Francis Velazquez (a woman disguised as a man!) and Goa O’Drosty, a beer brewer who was part of the crew on Bartholomeu Dias’ ship in 1488. The pair were abandoned at Hout Bay and set down roots at what became Constantia. Jump ahead a few centuries, and today South Africa’s big beer brands are consumed internationally. In addition, there is also a multitude of craft breweries making different types of beer. This guide by Jacques van Zyl details some of the history and methods of beer-brewing internationally, but mainly it concentrates on the multitude of small, local brewers. Information about how they started their businesses, the types of beer they brew, and whether they also have tasting, accommodation and restaurant facilities, is supplemented by maps, and detailed contact information, including GPS coordinates. This book is a treasure for those who want to try out some of the ales, lagers and other types of beer produced at the interesting array of craft breweries throughout the country. ISBN 978-1-77026-596-7, Map Studio

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SHELFTALK

REVIEWS Lia Lubuscagne

How Crab Lost His Head A hairy hippo? A lion that could fly? A crocodile prince? They all feature in this book of animal tales from Africa. Although aimed mainly at children between the ages of 7 and 12, this would also be a good read-aloud book for the family. Nick Greaves, a geologist who has a fascination with wildlife and animals, recounts some of the myths and legends of southern Africa in a way that is easily accessible and fun. In addition to the stories, the author also included some facts about the creatures that feature in the stories, to answer some of the questions that young readers may have about the real animals on which the fictional ones were based. The book is strikingly illustrated by David du Plessis, a graphic artist and illustrator with a BSc degree and a particular interest in natural history. ISBN 978-1-77584-187-6, Struik Nature

Snakes and Snakebite in Southern Africa Whether snakes scare you or not, information about them could come in handy for those who like the outdoors. The maps, illustrations and clear descriptions will assist with the identification of common snakes in southern Africa, from harmless to dangerous. Particularly useful are the drawings that show the average and maximum length of the different snakes compared to the height of an average adult human male, as well as icons that show when (day or night) and in what kind of environment (in trees, in shrubs or on the ground) the species is likely to be encountered. This guide clearly states how venomous and dangerous each snake is, and in addition to general first-aid advice relating to snakes, it also provides information about the correct measures to be taken in the case of snakebite for each species described. Its author is Johan Marais, who is a naturalist and photographer, and who has contributed significantly to reptile conservation in the country. He also runs the African Snakebite institute. ISBN 978-1-775843-023-7, Struik Nature

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Meteorites The Chelyabinsk meteor, which exploded in 2013 in the atmosphere over a remote part of Siberia, made headline news internationally when its shockwave caused much damage to buildings, and injuries to more than 1 500 due to flying glass and other debris from the affected buildings. Very little of the original object has been found and large intact meteorites are relatively rare. The largest known meteorite on Earth, the Hoba meteorite, has an estimated mass of more than 60 tonnes – and can be found here in southern Africa. It lies near Grootfontein in Namibia, and has been declared a national monument to protect it against vandalism. Yet, it is dwarfed by much larger meteorites that have struck Earth in the past. One that may have been about 10km across, created the largest known meteor impact site in the world more than two billion years ago. We know it as the Vredefort Dome – one of our World Heritage sites. But what are meteorites? In short, they are meteors that were large enough to survive an impact with Earth’s atmosphere. Meteors are ‘debris from space’, and contain a wealth of information about the formation of the Solar System. They can be as small as a speck of dust, and most of them burn up in the atmosphere to be seen as ‘shooting stars’ at night. But depending on the conditions – their composition, size and angle at which they enter the atmosphere and the speed at which they travel – some larger ones end up as rocks on Earth. Read more in this user-friendly book by Ronnie McKenzie. It is intended to give the non-specialist an idea of why these objects are so interesting and where to see some of them. ISBN 978-1-77584-098-5, Struik Nature

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DESTINATIONS

DISCOVER OUR COASTLINE

S

Five South African hikes not to be missed this summer

outh Africa has a coastline of between 2 798 and 3 751 kilometres, depending on who you ask and how they measured it. Every summer, thousands of people flock to this long and diverse stretch of coast to relax and enjoy the beaches, waves and sun with their families and loved ones. While it’s lovely to spend the summer lounging on beaches and soaking up the sun, our beautiful coastline also offers lots of great opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to stretch their legs and explore. Here are five coastal hikes from the Transkei to the west coast that are something truly special for hikers, walkers and slackpackers to experience.

COFFEE BAY TO HOLE IN THE WALL, TRANSKEI

THE HARKERVILLE TRAIL, GARDEN ROUTE NATIONAL PARK

GPS coordinates: -31.987777, 29.148584 Length: 3 hours Info: www.coffeeshack.co.za/ www.bomvubackpackers.com

GPS coordinates: -34.078509, 23.227801 Length: 2 days Info: www.sanparks.co.za

The hike from Coffee Bay to Hole in the Wall takes approximately three hours and leads you on a trail that weaves through a stunning juxtaposition of rolling green hills, crisp white sand beaches, black rock pools and aquamarine waters. The hike is moderately difficult with some steep contour paths that run along precipitous cliffs. It is not particularly dangerous, however, and is suitable for those who are relatively fit. The Transkei is famed for its idyllic rural beauty, and this trail offers hikers the perfect opportunity to experience this. Handmade rondavels bordered by vegetable gardens and cattle kraals perch atop the livestock manicured hills. Beautiful sand beaches, framed by rock pools teeming with life, offer a perfect spot to take a load off after the many summits and descents of the undulating landscape. The hike starts in Coffee Bay (you can find information at trail maps at any of the local backpackers) and winds its way to the famous and beautiful Hole in the Wall, a rock formation caused by aeons of waves wearing away at a column of rock perched in the sea.

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BY Matthew Koehorst

This overnight trail is an absolutely spectacular 24km hike for moderately fit hikers. It is similar to the world famous Otter trail in its scenery, though without the year-long waiting list. The hike begins at Harkerville, just outside of Plettenberg Bay, and winds its way through lush indigenous forests composed of Yellow woods, Stinkwoods and more beautiful Afromontain trees for kilometres before emerging onto a massive band of cliffs that over look the sea. From here, the trail descends rapidly to rocky beaches with bright orange, lichen-covered rocks bordering the surging seas. The path snakes its way along the bottom of the cliffs, just above the washing waves, before more beaches, cliffs, fynbos and forests follow. The trail includes accommodation at a comfortable hiking lodge equipped with the bare necessities including an open fire, showers, fresh water and comfortable bunk beds that sleep four people per room. The two day hike is an absolutely amazing opportunity to feel completely alone in the Wilderness without having to travel too very far modern luxuries and amenities and is a fantastic option for outdoorsy types looking for a multi-day hike on the Garden Route.

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DESTINATIONS TWO OCEANS CIRCUIT, CAPE POINT GPS: -34.356712, 18.496917 Length: 3 hours Info: www.sanparks.co.za Cape Point Nature Reserve, situated past Simons Town at the tip of the Cape Peninsula is a fantastically beautiful nature reserve with a variety of beautiful buck, Ostrich, and other wildlife as well as pristine fynbos. It’s also a historically rich area which was a hotspot for shipwrecks hundreds of years ago. The reserve has several amazing hikes, including some overnight trails that are absolutely fantastic and only 45 minutes drive from the Cape Town CBD. The Two Oceans Circuit is a three hour hike in Cape Point Nature Reserve and is a great way to get a little bit off the beaten tourist track in the area. The hike begins at the large parking area at Cape Point and starts with a fairly rigorous uphill climb to a ridge to the North East which reveals stunning views across False Bay and the east coast peninsula. From the ridge, the path passes to the left of Vasco da Gama peak before descending through picturesque fynbos. The path follows a road down to the sea edge, where the sound of sucking waves and the strong smell of seaweed quickly change the ambience of the hike from a fynbos walk to very much a coastal hike. From here the trail picks its way along the shoreline for about an hours worth of walking towards the Cape of Good Hope, the South Western point of Africa, before making its way back up to the parking lot, above the cliffs of the secluded and seemingly untouched Dias beach. Keep an eye peeled for Eland, Ostriches and Bontebok on the hike and if you do decide to stop for a snack or picnic be aware of the local troop of Baboons who have become very adept thieves and opportunists always on the look-out for a tired traveller’s unguarded lunch or backpack. Remember to make enough time to visit the lighthouses at Cape Point before or after your hike for great views of the stark rocky point and False Bay, and be aware that the gates to the park close sundown.

THE WHALE TRAIL, DE HOOP NATURE RESERVE, OVERBERG GPS Coordinates: -34.413603, 20.544979 Length: 1-5 days Info: www.capenature.co.za The Whale Trail is situated in the unique De Hoop Nature reserve, situated in the Overberg, three hours’ drive from Cape Town at the mouth of the Brede River. It is a typically a 4-5 day hike, but the area can also be visited and explored as a day hike. The hike, named after the numerous whales that cavort and relax in the bay from June to December, takes you on a coastal and fynbos tour where you can spend the days watching whales relaxing near the shore. The combination of a large gentle bay and one of Africa’s largest Marine Protected Areas probably makes this trail one of the best places for land based whale watching in South Africa. Up to 70 whales have been spotted in a single day in the bay! The trail meanders over sand dunes, through fragrant, scrubby coastal fynbos, and passed unique, beautiful and diverse limestone rock pools that colour the water an extraordinary aquamarine. This stretch of coastline is well known for the many middens left behind by the early Strandloopers who lived in the area, surviving of the numerous shell fish and edible seaweeds that the rock pools have to offer. The trail is broken up to sections and can be experienced as a day hike, or an overnight hike depending on what you are looking for. It is very popular and accommodation should be booked well in advance through the De Hoop Nature Reserve website.

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DESTINATIONS

EVE’S TRAIL, WEST COAST NATIONAL PARK GPS: -33.170714, 18.149176 Length: 2.5 days Info: www.capebiosphere.co.za Eve’s trail is a 30km, two night, two and a half day wilderness ‘slackpacker’ hike located in the Cape West Coast Biosphere, a 36 8000 hectare nature area in the lowland plains north of Cape Town. The trail is themed after the footsteps and lives of the prehominids who inhabited the region aeons ago and was inspired by fossilised footprints that have been discovered in the area. The hike makes its way along the beaches, rocky shorelines and sand dunes of the region, as well as passing Langebaan Lagoon and is a fantastic opportunity for bird watching. Both nights accommodation are spent in the West Coast National Park, and the trail begins with a guided sunset walk to the dunes overlooking the Langebaan Lagoon before kicking off along 16 Mile Beach at the beginning of day two. At the end of the 1st full day of hiking, walkers are given a lift to Kraalbaai where the fossilised footprints (know as Eve’s footprints) were found. The last day takes hikers through the biodiversity rich coastal plains and salt pans before following the edge of the lagoon with views over Churchhaven and ending at a historic cottage in the area.

These five hikes are only at tiny sampling of the astoundingly lovely and diverse landscapes that our coastline has to offer, but getting out and experiencing the true beauty of our country is a great balm for the soul after a year’s hard work. Get out and explore!

Building a new home? Use a registered builder. A registered builder is key to any building project. In line with the Housing Consumers Protection Measures Act, all homebuildings must be registered with the NHBRC and all new homes must be enrolled, at least, 15 days prior to construction. Enrolment affords you, the housing consumer, benefits such as a 3-month warranty cover against minor defects, 1-year warranty cover against roof leaks and a 5-year warranty cover against major structural defects.

To verify if your builder is registered visit www.nhbrc.org.za

@NHBRC

NHBRCSA

Assuring Quality Homes

Toll Free Number: 0800 200 824 / Fraud Hotline: 0800 203 698 / Tel: +27 11 317 0000


ECOSPORT

DEEP OCEAN

KAYAKING BY Gordon Brown

Barry Lewin

W

e all know the name Oscar Chalupsky – that most famous of surfski paddlers, who along with his brother Herman, dominated the paddling world for many years. As sports go, deep ocean kayaking, or surfski paddling, is not the easiest to get into. The craft is for all intents and purposes a hydro foil designed for speed through water, not for balancing on, and so getting the hang of it requires a certain commitment, but I guess that’s true of most things that are worth doing. Taking up the sport from a lifesaving, surfing or river paddling background makes it easier as a certain knowledge of the ocean or at least an ability to paddle unstable craft is an advantage, but anyone can paddle. Surfski, in my opinion anyway, is actually a wind sport like wind surfing, kite boarding, and now stand up paddle boarding – all of which utilise a

combination of the wind, wind chop, and deep ocean swells to propel you forward and get you your kicks! To really enjoy surfski, however, you need fitness, good technique, and ocean skills. It’s a sport that requires you to power your craft through the water - even going down wind and down swell at up to 30km/h, when you are literally surfing, to connect and maintain momentum between runs you need to paddle, in fact you need to sprint. In flat water however it’s all about stroke and drafting other boats – comparing flat water to down-wind is a bit like comparing road and mountain biking in cycling. Similar in appearance but very different in reality, and in both sports you get athletes that prefer one or the other. In South Africa we have some of the best paddling and some of the best paddlers in the world, led by multiple world champions David

Oscar Chalupsky

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Mocke and Hank McGregor, with David more of the surfski specialist. David and his wife Nikki spearhead a fanatical crew of paddlers in the Western Cape who, in spite of the cold water, enjoy some of the roughest and most incredible downwind surfski paddling anywhere. With awesome events culminating in the Cape Point Challenge every December and the SE wind howling from September through March, there are few days not perfect for a down wind paddle. Paddling from Granger Bay to Clifton is also cool in summer, with the predominantly SW swell (if not always the wind) lining up perfectly as you round Barkers Rock and head for home. Barkers is the name given to an ominous large rock jutting out of the ocean off the coast at Clifton where legendary paddler Glenn McGregor was lost at sea several years ago. KZN paddlers have a great tradition too with mega events like the Scottsburg to Brighton and Dolphin Coast Challenge, and epic downwind routes like Umhlanga to Durban on a NE wind. With warm water and lots of lifesaving clubs and a thriving river paddling scene, KZN is a great place to paddle. The Eastern Cape is not to be outdone with the big daddy event of them all the Southern Shamaal – PE to East London 4 day stage paddle race that’s like the Cape Epic in mountain biking – doing it defines you as a paddler in the eyes of other paddlers. Apart from the events and the fun, few sports will get you closer to nature, with dolphins and turtles on the East coast, to wales, seals, and, yes, great white sharks around the Cape – you are never alone out there. A personal memory that will stay with me forever was gunning downwind from Hout Bay to Granger Bay, when I looked over my shoulder just as I passed Llandudno to see that I had been accompanied by literally hundreds of seals also surfing the wind chop down towards Clifton and on to the Waterfront; what a sight that was!

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FUTURELEADERS

CAREERS TAKING THE ROAD LESS TRAVELLED

South Africa is going through a period of great transformation; we are seeing rapid expansion in various industries coupled with serious declines and a massive unemployment rate. Arguably one of the most glaring political issues is that of job creation, as many young people are struggling to find work. In order for the economy to ride out this period of fiscal turbulence, a great emphasis has been placed on the need for entrepreneurs and the growth of small businesses. We preview three amazing entrepreneurs who have taken the bull by the horns and done fantastic things in the realm of small business start-ups and in making a name for themselves. These brilliant young idea generators have used their determination and charisma to build businesses that would make even Bill Gates sit up and listen. Ludwick Marishane, who hails from Limpopo, was named by Google among the 12 most intelligent young brains in the universe. As a teenager, he started many businesses such as his own brand of biodiesel, healthy cigarettes and a security magazine. Although many of these failed, he then started a small company that would go on to be a rip-roaring success, called HeadBoy Industries. Headboy is a business that designs and commercialises new products and services in South Africa. One of its products, DryBath, is the world’s first bath-substituting solution. It is easy to use and needs minimal water. It moisturises the skin, kills germs, and leaves the user smelling fresh.

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Ashley Uys can arguably be described as South Africa’s own Einstein or Walter White (before he went bad). Ashley is the founder of Medical Diagnostech, a company that develops and markets affordable and reliable medical test kits for malaria, pregnancy, syphilis, malaria and HIV/Aids for Africa’s rural poor. The company’s malaria test can correctly identify which strain of malaria a patient has and subsequently how to treat it. This can be ascertained in just 30 minutes. However, the more astounding aspect of this test is that it can be purchased for just R4, which provides millions of people with the opportunity to correctly diagnose malaria, whereas previously they may have gone without knowing they were ill. Despite this success, Ashley still continues to work “feverishly” in developing similar cost-effective tests for other illnesses, such as diabetes.

AUTHOR Jess Handley

The most recent additions to the ranks of potentially great entrepreneurs are two young Capetonians who have started an interesting project operating in and around Cape Town. Jean-Marc Lenferna and Jonah Lewis are the proud founders of Inside & You’re Out, a mobile burger joint with the most delicious burgers that could give restaurants such as Hudsons a run for their money. The idea behind this burger joint is that their burgers are made from organic, healthy ingredients, as these days a healthy burger is very hard to come by. Their key selling point is that they are earth-friendly from the feet up and create wonders with their patrons, and not for them. I&YO is a mobile gourmet burger store that does private events and affairs, operating at markets and festivals around South Africa. For more information, visit iyoburgers.co.za

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DOING IT YOURSELF?

ADVICE FOR ENTREPRENEURS

ADVICE FROM THE WORLD’S MOST LEGENDARY ENTREPRENEURS: “Train people well enough so they can leave; treat people well enough so that they won’t want to.” -Richard Branson, founder and CEO of Virgin

“Be nice to the geeks; you’ll probably end up working for one.” -Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft

“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.” -Steve Jobs, founder of Apple

“If you were born without wings, do nothing to prevent them from growing.” - Coco Chanel, founder of iconic fashion label Chanel

FUTURELEADERS

“When you stop learning, that’s when you start getting old. I’m still learning every day, whether from a new book on Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet or a Philippa Gregory historical novel.” -Raymond Ackerman, Chairman and founder of Pick n Pay

BY Rio Brown

You are young, intelligent and full of ambition—but you can’t get a job. This is a familiar situation for school-leavers and graduates across the country, with job prospects for young people at an all-time low. Take matters into your own hands and make your own success. Starting a business is a growing trend for resourceful young people. Follow these five top tips to help you on your way to business success. 1. Take risks You’re probably not yet responsible for mortgages and childcare. This is the one time in your life where are can take risks, so do it. 2. Take advantage of social media If you’re under the age of 21, chances are you’re pretty good at using social media. You’re the Facebook generation, bought up with sharing information online. Apply these skills to your business and utilise social media to advertise your venture. Not only can you build up online relationships with your customers but it is also a cost-effective way of advertising. 3. Find a mentor A mentor can give you advice and guidance on the types of things that only come with life experience. They can help you understand your challenges and advise you on how to overcome them. 4. Use available resources If you’re a student you probably have access to a library with a wealth of information on business. If your college or university has an entrepreneurs society, join it. Make the most of all information and resources that you can find. Building up your knowledge with readily available information will make you better equipped at business. 5. Be prepared to fail Not all business ideas turn into the next big thing. In order to succeed in business you must be prepared to fail. You can learn from these mistakes and these experiences will build up your knowledge and understanding of how business works.

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Builders & Ripples for Good partner together to build sustainable communities! Sharing a common goal and vision, Builders and Ripples for Good have had a positive impact on more than 200 schools and over 180 000 learners since 2011! The focus is on the building and renovation of schools in and around the communities in which we operate, giving store staff the opportunity to get involved and make a difference in their local communities. Each project receives a predetermined donation with a strong focus on sustainability, each school gets vital structural improvements enabling the schools to save money on monthly bills. Builders is proud to partner with Ripples for Good to offer sustainable environments for our future leaders!

Get to Builders. Get it done! Contact our Customer Care Line on 0860 284 533 or visit us at www.builders.co.za


GAMECHANGERS

“ EDUPLANT FOOD AND TREES FOR AFRICA BY Melissa Baird

I

was invited to attend the Food and Trees For Africa Eduplant awards that took place in Johannesburg, and as I am ever curious to see the results of their work (rather than rehash a press release) I went along to see for myself what has been achieved. Adjectives like amazing, incredible, humbling all pale in comparison to the feelings that welled up inside when I watched an 11-year-old praise singer – replete in traditional garb – give a big shout out for the land, the water, his teachers, and the nutritious vegetables growing out of the ground that feed the school children; and for permaculture, a system that regenerates the land and helps build healthy communities as a result. I was moved to tears of amazement on more than one occasion as these children and their teachers presented the stories of their food gardens to the panel of judges who are the facilitators of the projects and the corporate sponsors, united in their dedication to promote food growing techniques in order to enhance food security in some of the most impoverished areas in the country. The youngest group was made up of 3, 6 and 7-year-olds, who stood on the stage with their teacher and told us that their lives were forever changed because of what they

GROWING THE FUTURE...

THE EDUPLANT AWARDS FOCUS ON PERMACULTURE, THE CONSCIOUS DESIGN AND MAINTENANCE OF AGRICULTURALLY PRODUCTIVE SYSTEMS THAT HAVE THE DIVERSITY, STABILITY AND RESILIENCE OF NATURAL ECOSYSTEMS. THE PRINCIPLES WORK WITH RATHER THAN AGAINST NATURE, COMBINING LANDSCAPES AND PEOPLE, AND PROVIDING FOOD, ENERGY AND SHELTER.

-Jeunesse Park, Founder of Food & Trees for Africa and EduPlant.

were learning (and that is just them at their beginning!) Since 1994 the EduPlant programme has been seeding itself throughout South Africa and 20 years later the success stories are astounding. Sixty schools participated in this year’s event and every single one of them showed just what an impact the food garden programme for schools is having on the learners and facilitators as they take on the mammoth task of generating a nation of children who understand food security and their role within the natural system.

children who tend the gardens learn vital skills and develop a sense of self- empowerment that will serve them well throughout their lives. The EduPlant programme is funded by various corporate supporters, most notable Engen and Woolworths who have shown their commitment to supporting an initiative that literally will grow the future communities of this country in a healthy, happy and abundant way. The permaculture teachers and their students are real game changers because they in turn are able to teach others the incredible skills of growing one’s own food. I stood in the courtyard of this dusty, recreational centre and watched as the children ran around before the main event, bouncing with joy that their time for recognition had come because each of them had done something truly amazing. They had created food gardens and will never have to face the hunger demon that knocks at so many doors in this country.

“MY GARDEN IS MY PALACE” –Eleven-year-old student presenter at the Eduplant awards Permaculture is a way of working with nature to enhance the natural systems that already exist in order to provide abundance, as nature does in her ultimate essence. This way crop yield is enhanced and often school gardens end up being able to provide excess vegetables to community health centres and families in need. People are fed and the school

The winners of the emerging category, Pula Madibogo Primary School - Limpopo.

To nominate a school or find out how to participate in the EduPLant programme, visit www.trees.co.za/programmes/eduplant

www.greenhomemagazine.co.za

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ENERGY UPDATE

BY Melissa Baird

SOLAR POWER IS COOKING Google has invested USD 12 million into their first renewable energy project in Africa. The 96 megawatt (MW) photovoltaic (PV) Jasper solar power project is fully operational. This Northern Cape solar park also includes the 75 MW Lesedi solar power project which came online in May. The Lesedi and Letsatsi Projects (in the Free State) offer up to 150 MW of energy, enough to power 130,000 South African homes with clean energy. Power from the sun is not only giving households a much needed energy boost, it is also providing solutions for job creation in these areas. The Jasper plant has a whopping 325,000 photovoltaic modules, that can deliver 180,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity every year. This is enough power to supply 80,000 households through a 20year power purchase agreement with Eskom.

Jasper PV Project overview –– –– –– –– –– ––

Location: near Kimberley, South Africa Technology: Photovoltaic (PV) Size: 96 MW-DC installed capacity; 75 MW-AC net generation Electricity Production: approximately 180,000 MW-hours annually Power Purchaser: 20-year government supported PPA with Eskom Homes Powered: 80,000 homes

–– There’s now 15 times more solar power and three times more wind power in the world than in 2007. –– The costs of solar and wind have declined profoundly. Renewables are increasingly the cheapest source of new electricity. –– Renewables are now mainstream: In the OECD countries, 80 percent of new electricity generation added between now and 2020 is expected to be renewable. –– In Spain, wind power was the country’s top source of electricity in 2013, ahead of nuclear, coal and gas. Renewables altogether supplied 42 percent of mainland Spain’s electricity in 2013, and 50 percent in the first half of 2014. –– In Denmark, wind provided for 41 percent of the country’s electricity consumption in the first half of 2014. –– In South Australia, wind farms produced enough electricity to meet a record 43 percent of the state’s power needs during July 2014. –– In the Philippines, renewable energy—mainly geothermal—provides 30 percent of the country’s electricity. –– In India, the state of Tamil Nadu already gets 13 percent of its electricity from wind. News is an amount of US 1 Billion is being allocated to invest in renewable energy. Source: ecowatch.com

RENEWABLE

HOW RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES ARE PERFORMING WORLDWIDE

ENERGY

RENEWABLE SUSTAINABLE ENERGY SOURCES ARE NO LONGER THE STUFF OF SCIENCE FICTION. EVERY DAY THERE ARE MORE AND MORE EXAMPLES OF IT BEING USED AND IMPROVED UPON ACROSS OUR FRAGILE PLANET.

NEWS: FOSSIL FUEL DIVESTMENT CAMPAIGN The debate to end investment in fossil fuels is proving to be a very hot topic around the world and here, in South Africa, the Fossil Free SA divestment campaign (started at the University of Cape Town a year ago) is gaining traction and seeking crowd-funding to go nation-wide in their work with universities (and beyond). Endorsed by Archbishop Tutu and other committed supporters and organisations the move towards investing in solutions for the future will gather momentum. Divestment is a powerful strategy that helped defeat apartheid. There are now numerous cities, universities and faith and other organisations that have committed to divest from fossil fuel companies and the list grows longer by the day. Fossil fuels are not the energy of the future which is why there is such a powerful call to action to choose renewables as a solution to deliver energy, abundantly and safely in the future. To follow the campaign please visit http://gofossilfreesouthafrica.wordpress.com/support/

www.greenhomemagazine.co.za

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PLUMBING THE POSSIBILITIES

Green Home Magazine Issue 18 - Alive2green  

Green Home magazine is a practical guide that speaks about things organically, from the roots up – it does not presume to lecture but rather...

Green Home Magazine Issue 18 - Alive2green  

Green Home magazine is a practical guide that speaks about things organically, from the roots up – it does not presume to lecture but rather...

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