Kouga Express

Humanitarians shape children’s lives through education

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Johan Vos (left) and his wife, Astrid, with children from their various educational facilities.
Johan Vos (left) and his wife, Astrid, with children from their various educational facilities.
Photo: Supplied

With no money, no vision and three young children in tow, Johan and Astrid Vos travelled from the Netherlands in 2002, and set their paths on starting a new life in Jeffreys Bay.

Now, 20 years later, the pair have fulfilled their dreams of establishing multiple educational facilities throughout the Kouga region through their foundation, Victory4All, which was established in 2003, in a bid to break the cycle of poverty by providing Christian-based quality education.

Johan said that when they started the foundation, they began working in the local townships of Jeffreys Bay by donating milk and food to crèches, helping to repair damaged homes, and arranging for children to undergo much-needed surgery at private hospitals in Gqeberha.

In 2005, exactly two years after they founded Victory4All, they opened the doors to Noah’s Ark Pre-School, which was the first of many educational facilities established as part of their mission to provide children in the area with quality education.

“When we started our foundation 20 years ago, we saw classes with 50 or more children and we knew that nobody could teach so many children in one class, especially because many of them had severe social issues,” said Johan.

“The one thing for all children to succeed is top quality education and life skills based on God’s values and principles.”

Once Noah’s Ark Pre-School was up and running, the couple went on to establish five foster homes in Jeffreys Bay and three in Humansdorp.

Finally, in 2007 they opened King’s College Primary School in Tokyo Sexwale but, due to the rapid increase in the number of learners at the school, they soon realised that they needed a new, bigger building.

They then applied for a vacant plot through the Kouga Municipality, which would allow them to build the school they envisioned, but unfortunately, they waited eight long years for approval.

Astrid said while they waited, they continued to prepare for the construction of the school building but found that it was difficult to raise the R40 million in funds they needed when they had not yet received the green light to start building.

Fortunately, in 2016, they were finally able to start building their ‘castle’ and officially opened the doors to the school two years later.

“We did not have much success when we first started raising funds for the school, but the Lord is faithful, and He opened the floodgates of heaven. The needed funds came in and we were able to start building,” said Astrid.

While Johan and Astrid were working on the establishment of King’s College, they were hard at work on various other projects to uplift the Kouga community.

In 2008, they began a Rainbow Village Centre in Humansdorp, which branched out to Rainbow School, a school for children with special needs, Rainbow Angels, a centre for severely handicapped children and Rainbow Skills Centre, where children could develop their skills for gardening and art among other skills.

Furthermore, they started a small business with seven children from their Rainbow Village Centre, which has allowed them to make and sell stroopwafels, a unique sweet Dutch waffle.

Despite their numerous projects in the Kouga region, Johan and Astrid have many more great plans in the pipeline with their most recent project being the establishment of King’s College High School.

Johan said they were currently in the process of procuring land to build the high school to further accommodate learners in the rural areas of Kouga.

“Every location we have received by prayer, and we are currently praying for land to establish a new building for our King’s College High School,” said Johan.

Astrid said they were proud of the work they have done thus far for the Kouga community, but they are extremely proud of their team who consist of 90 local staff members and 10 overseas volunteers.

“All of them are very special and they all work very hard. They are all anointed and have a passion for the children at our various educational facilities,” said Astrid.

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