Monday, June 27, 2011


What a success; a huge success! I am absolutely thrilled with our very first ever African Empowered Child Conference ever! They came from all walks of child-based professions--NGOs, Educators, Social Workers, Curriculum Developers, Artists and the most amazing four girls that in every sense of the word embodied the spirit of our conference. I have added Nicholas Mamba’s speech that opened the conference and a few letters of gratitude that the teachers and student of Emabheleni Primary School.

Damarise Ste. Marie did a contemporary dance and I danced along with The People’s Educational Theatre. With almost 60 in attendance, the final consensus was that the arts must be part of the young Swazi child’s development in order to reach a level of empowerment so that they can evolve and thrive in the future.

By the end of the conference all delegates were in tears as the young girls gave their most heart-felt testimonials about The Big Little Caravan of Joy and our Team Joy!

Without the help of Nicholas Mamba, Andrew Moyo, Sandile Ndzimandze, Damarise Ste. Marie, and the entire Team Joy this day would not be possible. A big thank you goes to Swaziland’s Arts and Culture Department for financially contributing to this day!

I hope you enjoy this entry!

Nicholas Mamba’s Opening Key Note Address for the very first

Empowered African Child Conference 2011 held on African Soil

Investing in educating children rarely trusts the hands of creativity in solving problems. Interventions are full of red tape-- rigid procedures, donʼt promote this. The whole country panicked as a result of our situation with HIV and AIDS. During this rush, to do whatever we could to fight this pandemic, there was a tendency to regard the Swazi citizens as incapable of dealing contemporary and socially relevant issues. I am sure you know this. Essentially we were all told that there is a monster out there - do this and donʼt do that.

During this race against time the methods that were put in place were not culturally sensitive. The techniques and practices at times would have a young child 18 or so talking to 50 year olds about sex. Not only was this a taboo but it made the message ineffective and almost was ridiculed. They older communities and families were insulted. Some sections of populations would not come to the party anymore. We lost a lot of ground because of this disconnection and we divided the population. I myself took part in programs of sensitizing young people about abuse and how it effects their lives. The young child would be made of aware of many things; the implications and repercussions of abuse and the many faces of abuse. The program aimed to empower the child to stand up against abuse. An interesting thing and fact about this activity is that all of them were about abuse; they were feeling the pressure of retelling their true story. Were we meeting the needs of the child? Bottom line, as much at this programʼs intention was to empower the child in actual in fact it created a conflict and much confusion in communities. However the approach shifted over the years. The partnership with the NGOS came with a new way to review and create programming that integrated the performing arts and culturally sensitive activities.

This to me was a much better methodology as it tries very hard bridge the gaps! It was very exciting as an artist to work on a program that dealt with the male population. It was an eye opener to participate in dialogue with these men. In some extent the men were demonized and vilified in many community dramas. After many discussions, it was very interesting to realize that everybody wanted the best for the country, in this country. But as leaders of art and change of our society we have always recognized the significance of empowering the child. We formed an association that dealt specifically with theatre and young people.

With this association we have worked with 40% of the students of Swaziland. Now through the support of the UN bodies and NGOs, we were able to use art as a vehicle to empower the child and also to give the young people of Swaziland all the information and life skills they needed during these times of struggle. All the regions of Swaziland were set ablaze in 2007 with our artists training and organizing performances in their respective constituencies. Some of the best works of arts that I have ever seen, of HIV performances, were crafted by children during this time.

But there was something missing.

However good those efforts were, there was still more that was needed to be done. In our hearts we knew that we were part of an exciting movement but there was something missing. These arts based methods were not age specific. We did not take into consideration age appropriate activities for the children; we just blanketing them as an age bracket. A six year old, with her two front teeth missing, would be discussing HIV, sex trafficking, abuse and the like.

In 2009, our relationship with the Yale University brought our team us to working with Clowns Without Borders South Africa. The gift that this relationship brought to the table was an understanding of the power of laughter and play. We worked in remote rural schools and for that week we infected the South East Swazilandʼs schools.

But something was still missing.

We were tapping into the element happiness with the children but we not tapping into their inherent nature and joy. Some of you may not know the difference between the two. Last year I was introduced to the difference. Simply stated happiness comes from receiving, joy comes from giving. Happiness is something that is fleeting, like we are all happy that we are going to feed you for free today. Joy is something that carries on despite circumstances.

Joy is an attitude of the heart. As happiness in life will eventually fade-- joy will remain in tact. Joy brings us peace in the middle of a storm. But the question is how do you unleash this joy in children? This brings me to the present time, to the now, to where we are all sitting in this room.

In the last two years I have had my artistic world revived! Ngingene Endumbeni!

I discovered during this time that the spirit of art safely holds us together and it is bigger than what we have been offering to communities at large. Particularly when it is applied to the mind of the child.

I have had the opportunity to go into a couple of schools and work with all the children where we created a production with the entire school body. And we are talking a population of 630 children at one school and at another 104! Scary but very possible. This project integrated all the art modalities for each and every child. It included a handful of visual arts projects, drama, song, dance and story telling. It culminated in a festival like day where all the showed off their creations and performed for the community.

It also included participation and performances by the teachers. The facilitators were called “ Team Joy”. It was humbling to witness the uniqueness of each childʼs creative work It is impossible for me to really give you the picture of what unfolded there. You really needed to be there to fully appreciate the impact of our program. Now I also want to say that I strong believe that it comes at the right time for our country. I am sure all of you are aware that the arts curriculum has been developed for the primary grades and is being implemented to some degree as practical arts.You may also be aware that there is a strong push in our education sectors for creative learning. As a result there is a new university which is 100% based in creative arts education. Our program as piloted in Swaziland at two primary schools provide some ideas on how the arts can implemented in its fullest form.

We recognize that intention alone is not enough to bring our dream to life which is why we are utmostly blessed when we developed a relationship with Sarina Condello of The Big Little Caravan of Joy. Sarina is a complex yet simple combination of a performing artist, motivational speaker, professor of arts and education which is all driven by her spiritual nature. She can soil her hands in the mud while playing with children, and also stand tall in high heels in a lecture room in honour in the young child. This is a quality that I deeply admire for I have realized that in order to put the interest of the child first we have to fight from many fronts, which is why we brought all of you together in your esteemed professions and competencies.

It is an honour for me therefore to be at the center of passing this gift to my fellow Swazi artists, our partners, the NGOs and the teachers. The goal for me is commitment. If we can all at least, in our daily programming, commit to some of these philosophies that would be a success to us.

Emabheleni Primary School

PO Box 3672


23 June 2011

Dear Friends,

We are kindly writing this letter to let you know about your support you did for our school.

We are very happy to visit our school to teach us different things. Now we can decorate in the wedding or party. We can make money by using the knowledge you gave us. You did a very important job to teach us that we must run away from danger through the games you have taught us.

We are thankful for visiting our school you have done just a perfect job to choose our school. We are grateful to teach us games and songs that we were never knew. As we are the students we thank you that you have visited some of the schools in Swaziland.

Please don’t end in our school that go all over Swaziland to teach them this good things.

Yours faithfully


Dear Team Joy

Re: Appreciation for your special visit

On behalf of Emabheleni Primary School’s teachers, pupils and parents I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the Big Little Caravan of Joy for making a stop in our school.

I am grateful that you made our school a pilot school in the different levels of art i.e. visula and performing art in which all pupils participated expressing a sense of creativity, exploration and enjoyment in the whole process.

The pupils who were withdrawn in class gained confidence and positive self esteem. Pupils who are less gifted academically saw themselves as achievers too.

May I also sincerely thank you and your team for the useful teaching materials you donated to us.

The fish, butterflies, flowers and photo frames they designed tell a wonderful story about their talents and future careers.

The pupils discovered their skills in singing, dancing, poetry and dramatising since this was interestingly performed.

This goes true for the saying that goes ‘Every child is a potential achiever’. May you be blessed and continue with this mission even in other schools in the country for the benefit of the Swazi child.

God bless you all.

Yours Sincerely

Sbusiso Ndzinisa (Principal)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Let's Imagine!

Today is the day of a most historic event titled " The Empowered African Child Conference"! IT is about to be put in ACTION so that the lives of Swazi children will be uplifted to a place of sustainable empowerment and profound joy. I have worked so hard for the last year on this event and also "The Empowered Noah Child Conference". Without the guidance of the beloved Nicholas Mamba I do not think this would be possible to execute with such grace. I humbly thank him for all that he has done. Another big thanks goes to Sandile Ndzimandze who has been working hard in the background, helping us with all the logistics needed in order to put on such an event. And without darling Damarise Ste. Marie I would feel disconnected from the Earth. Simply, I love these Swazi men who have been by my side for the last 2 summers, making sure that this magical change for all the children in this country, would happen during our lifetimes! I thank them humbly for not only looking out for me but for working around the clock to support this work in their country.

I will also be proposing a new program for these children where they will not only imagine themselves entering a place of new-found freedom and joy but in actuality, they will be EXPERIENCING themselves that way! I will end the conference with these words, for it is within the sacred container of the imagination that we begin planting seeds of change and possibility for the future.

Let's Imagine

Let’s imagine that we all give children a chance to speak their truth.

Let’s imagine that we give children time to dance, sing, paint, dance and dance some more.

Let’s imagine that boys, girls, men and women can see the beauty in our differences and the power in our similarities.

Let’s imagine that all Swazi educators, arts educators have time to rest, play, and get the support they need.

Let’s imagine that we all are present for our children and all the children we come across.

Let’s imagine that the system is designed not to judge our days by what our harvest has reaped but by the all the seeds we have all planted.

Let’s imagine that we allowed children to do what they love.

Let’s imagine that charity is an imperative aspect to our society.

Let’s imagine that early childhood education was viewed by our society as the one of the most important professions.

Let’s imagine that we all maintain the capacity for life long wonder.

Who knows? If we play it for all it's worth, we might just make it happen.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The times they are a-changin'!

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'!

Today was a great day! Great for so many reasons!

Firstly, we just got GREAT news that the department of Arts and Culture has contributed to our Empowered African Child Conference. If the government is backing this concept then the possibility of this inspired work unfolding with grace and speed is imminent!

Secondly, Team Joy is absolutely on FIRE!! The work we are doing, in this tiny little mountain school, is revolutionary in all ways. Culturally it is relevant and based in the Swazi Arts. The intention to empower all the children, regardless of HIV status or background, is a huge success. It is using a child- driven and child centric curriculum where child participation is 100%!!

And finally, I just finished buying, for the small school Mabheleni, supplies for each of the seven classrooms. This donation will be presented tomorrow at our community show. Costumes, face paint, sets, songs, dances and drama skits will be presented. The topic is playful, imaginative and age appropriate for young children. I feel blessed that I can contribute in this way. All of our fundraising back in Toronto is payed forward in the hope that we empower as many children possible!

This work is about creative play; play in its most authentic form. Play that unleashes the child spirit and creates a springboard for expression of many sorts.

Carl Jung, the famous philosopher said, “The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.”

Child spirit is what enables children to walk into any space and instantly see a detail that our adult eyes, often conditioned by habit or distracted by other thoughts, no longer see. Child spirit is what propels children to ask so many extraordinary questions about the world they live in and people around them – like “do our toys die when we die?” and “where does wind come from?” Child spirit is what enables a child to play and connect and feel joy, even though one or both of their parents has left their lives so early and isn’t there to nurture, guide, love and bear witness to their lives.

And child spirit doesn’t only reside in children. All of us have child spirit inside of us – we are all born with it. I see it everyday as we are doing this work. Every single teacher that we are working with delights in using the same materials as the children do. They sing the songs, dance the dances with a huge smiles on their faces. For many adults, they have put it away, or had it taken away, consciously or unconsciously. Maybe it’s tucked away in a little box or hidden behind some trees over there - but make no mistake, it’s there in everyone of us, in all of us!

Play is vital. It is an intrinsic and irreplaceable medium that helps children understand the world around them. All of us are born with the ability to play and create. It is one of our greatest gifts. You only have to observe these bright Swazi children while they play and create in this school to see the wonder and power of this gift in its most effervescent and spirited form. This is a gift. A blessing. A joy!

Children are the masters of finding happiness and it is through their play that this is realized. It's what they do. Birds fly, fish swim and children play. It's also the way they learn and acquire cognitive, social and motor skills.

Embracing play as a learning tool can lead to a special kind of intelligence. I think the most alluring affect that play provides for the participant is the development of the ability to take notice and act upon the nuances of a given situation. Just like an artist, the person engaged in the moment has their eyes, ears, minds, bodies and hearts wide open. This heightened awareness enables them to tune their focus and in doing so it guides their work. I learned this very early on in my teaching. It is this very thing that has inspired me to pass it down to children that are underprivileged and vulnerable.

And so we continue are work with love, dedication and joy. I look forward to tomorrow's tomorrow and the tomorrow of Swazi's future in art education for the young child!


Monday, June 20, 2011

Swaziland is ready for a bright, buoyant and creative transformation!

Swaziland is ready for a bright, buoyant and creative transformation. The potential in this country is evident where ever we go. The Swazi children are impressionable and bright, and within minutes their creative work evolves into little masterpieces before our eyes.

Our Team Joy 2011 is an experienced one. This is our second year facilitating this project in the country. It is made up of the invincible Nicholas Mamba who directs The People’s Educational Theatre. I feel blessed to know this gentleman and have realized that we are kindred spirits. My assistant is none other but the graceful and enchanting Damarise Ste. Marie. She keeps me organized, well fed and is a fantastic facilitator in all ways. God bless that girl. And wow, what a dancer! Team Joy also consists of the extraordinary Andrew Moyo! Articulate, wise, masterful at almost everything, (and holy smokes what great pipes he has) Andrew is the glue that keep everything together. He will be my co-director with the Zimbabwe project that we will be spear heading this July. I am so excited to get started and meet all the little children in Bulawayo! Musawenkosi Zikalala is probably the most well rounded artist who carries with him the spirit of a child and the brilliance of Picasso! This man can juggle, direct, sing, paint, and the list goes on. Musa is a joy! Onendile Mabs has a heart of gold. His presence is present. He connects to the child with sensitivity and sweetness. His voice resonates with rich and deep undertones. Phumzile is the clown. She makes us laugh until we are crying. She is strong model for the girls under her tutelage. She is an unique and courageous spirit!

The school that we are visiting as artists, is situated in the mountains. No other art program has visited this school so everything we do, for many or all of these children, is for the first time ever creating and playing in this fashion. The teachers are eating it up!

My profound gratitude goes to Sandile Ndzimandze for being the professional of the group with his incredible insight and direction in helping us pull together an historic conference for the educators of this country titled: The Empowered African Child Conference.

We are going full out to implement this program for many reasons. The list is long, that’s for sure! Here are some of our reasons:

1.The arts are a central aspect to all cultures around the world. It a force that has been part of human’s existence. It is an activity that defines the human spirit. Children inherently know this, feel this and in actual fact express themselves in this manner. Swazis are proud of their identity. This program reinforces cultural identity in all ways.

2.The arts are one of the most important modes of expression people utilize to express who they are in the world. In a child’s world this is a simple solution to creating a safe platform to express their individuality. This is an imperative need for the vulnerable, underprivileged and orphaned children of Swaziland. This program is like oxygen to these children! We have found that the children in this country blossom when given an opportunity to express their unique nature.

3.Because the arts convey the spirit and identity of a community and culture, if facilitated by regional artists this approach can support inter-cultural comprehension and experiential learning for the child. If the child is exposed to the arts as part of their experience then they will invest in the arts as adults. Creating an arts appreciative culture in children will only reinforce this connection in future years.

4. The arts can be multi-cultural but they can also be trans-cultural. Connecting to the arts in a personal way and being exposed to different art forms from around the world teach children openness, acceptance and compassion. This understanding of empathy is crucial in creating communities that are not based in stigmas, stereotypes or even fear of other cultures. The integration of our Canadian team makes for an international program. Exposure to other artists from other countries opens minds and hearts.

5. The power of the arts definitively enhances children’s cognitive processes. Intellectual competence must entail problem solving skills so that an individual has the ability to resolve genuine problems or prevailing circumstances. Creative problem solving is influenced by creative individuals. The arts are constantly grappling with solving problems that unfold naturally in the process of art making. This lays down the groundwork for the acquisition of new found knowledge. Simply, this arts based program will give to the Swazi educational system more tools in order to create a well rounded and intelligent student who can problem solve with creativity!

6. School Curriculums around the world, and here in Swaziland too, emphasize forms of representation - true-false or correct-incorrect is the prominent approach in education. The problem here is that the preparation of the young Swazi mind is missing the development of the creative spirit. Yes- there is critical and creative thinking that transpires with the arts. Most are not aware of this. Simply stated: an arts based curriculum is every bit as effective as the mathematical and linguistic form of cognition that is now the traditional emphasis of the primary school years.

Embracing play as a learning tool can lead to a special kind of intelligence. I think the most alluring affect that play provides for the participant is the development of the ability to take notice and act upon the nuances of a given situation. Just like an artist, the person engaged in the moment has their eyes, ears, minds, bodies and hearts wide open. This heightened awareness enables them to tune their focus and in doing so it guides their work. I learned this very early on in my teaching. It is this very thing that has inspired me to pass it down to children that are underprivileged and vulnerable.

And so we bring this delicious energy, synergy and passion to the mountains, fields and towns of Swaziland, Africa!


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Hello Beautiful Swaziland!!

The time is NOW in Swaziland! The time is ripe for a new movement in arts education for the young Swazi child!

The Big Little Caravan of Joy has arrived in Swaziland! Hurray, hurray!! We are now entering day four of our arts program in a rural school, up in the mountains. We are also gearing up for a symposium that will encourage, support and design a sustainable arts based program for the young children of Swaziland- The Empowered African Child!

Everything is put in place:

  • a great arts curriculum for the early years designed by the curriculum department
  • a governmental board that appreciates, honours and is designated to support arts and culture in the country
  • a body of teachers who are in desperate need of creative and inspiring educational resources
  • hundreds of intelligent and energetic artists that are ready to go
  • and here’s the kicker- almost 500,000 Swazi bright, creative children who are bursting with potentiality, are urgently needing and requiring empowerment in all areas of their young lives!!

The Deputy Prime Minister, Themba Masuku states:

“It is of paramount importance that children develop, grow and thrive in an enabling, protective and secure environment. The new strategy is to uphold the promotion, protection, and realization of children’s basic rights, and that this notion will be strategically integrated at all levels.”

Here are the hard cold facts as stated in The Government of the Kingdom of Swaziland.

The statistics for the young child in this country are gut-wrenching and unsettling.

1,018,449 is the population of the country.

52% of the population is younger than 20 years old.

In some areas of the country almost 40% are HIV positive.

There is a thirty-one year life expectancy.

There are 70,000 orphaned children and 60,000 highly vulnerable children in Swaziland.

22 % of children in the country live in a household with both parents.

33 % live without either parent.

The amount of psychosocial support needed to reach each and every child is overwhelming and staggering in all ways. But I know of a way that could bring joy, empowerment and effective pshco-social support for the children of Swaziland. Borrowing from a model that I experienced while being employed for 10 years at The Inner City Angels in Toronto, Canada, the concept is to create an arsenal of trained and certified artists that will rove the country supporting educators and giving these precious and bright Swazi children an opportunity to creatively express themselves. These artists, working along with educators, will provide hundreds of opportunities to grow and develop physically, socially, emotionally, mentally and spiritually so that they can facilitate an over all well-being and confidence in each Swazi child. The program would include culturally relevant art experiences, information sharing, dialogue activities, creative expression, experiences and innovation in all cultural and art modalities.

The Bottom Line:

These children are the most powerful asset in the country! Imagine if these assets were cultivated, honoured and revered in their developmental years!? If the young Swazi child is not given the opportunity create, express and creatively share with their community we then are unconsciously ripping and cutting the essential threads of potentiality. Without such a program that empowers the child though the arts we unknowingly are contributing to a frayed and fragmented spirit; especially with the vulnerable and orphaned children of this country.

The main goal of The Big Little Caravan of Joy’s work with children is to instill in them a sense of empowerment through culturally and socially sensitive arts experiences. This includes supporting the development of their self-esteem, helping to build their confidence, and allowing them to find their place in the world and creating a positive relationship with their environment. Empowered children will grow up to change the world!

Let the games BEGIN!

The goal of making this model sustainable in Swaziland is to honour and educate those who care for the children and to provide them with the necessary tools and renewed inspiration to infuse each and every Swazi child with something vital - joyful and creative play!

The Empowered African Child Conference

25 JUNE 2011, 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM


Thursday, June 2, 2011

7 Days I leave for AFRICA and I am FREAKED!

Dear Family, Friends and Loved Ones!

Thank you so very much for all your love and friendship! It is because of your dedication and belief in my work that the tour with The Big Little Caravan of Joy is actually happening! I am only 7 days from my departure for my three month adventure in Africa. I am flabbergasted, overwhelmed, scared and excited all at the same time!

My African Tour will travel to:
Swaziland, June 10th - 24th (100 educators, 300 kids)
South Africa, June 25th - July 17th (350 child care workers, 250 kids)
Zimbabwe, July 18th - July 30th (40 child care workers, 200 kids)
Ghana, July 31st- August 21st (20 educators, 250 kids)

In total:
1,500 Participants (Including all conference participants, children and educators)
50 African artists hired
13 Canadians volunteering
4 Countries in 3 months ... OH MY GOODNESS!!

The biggest news of course is my International Arts Conference in South Africa that will be taking place on July 1-3, 2011! This will be a HISTORIC EVENT IN ALL WAYS! This has never, ever happened before. 350 child care workers will be bussed to Durban to partake in a weekend conference. For many of these women they have never left their village or township before. For some, this will be the first time they see the ocean!! The Empowered Noah Child (ENC) and the EAC Conference in Swaziland is an international conference organized and directed by myself on behalf of Noah, PET and in conjunction with The Big Little Caravan of Joy. The goal of the conference is to embody the spirit of the performing arts, culture and play so as to give rise to the authentic and creative spirit of the Noah child. The programme has been created and designed specifically to inspire Child Activity Co-ordinators through the performing arts, and the magic of creative play in order to empower the young child. I am doing the same in Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Ghana too!

Please keep me in your prayers. It requires much grit, intrepidity and and will power to deliver this program to so many who live in challenging circumstances. My passionate purpose in creating light, where there is much darkness for small and vulnerable children, is much stronger than my lack of courage. For many times I am in utter disbelief with all that I have created and the whole thing can be quite intimidating!

I do hope that you will enjoy your summer! I send you a big hug from cyberspace.
Much Love,

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


Dear Conference Participant,

Welcome to the Noah Empowered Child Conference.

We are honoured to host you at our Noah Conference, a significant and historic event for us. Never before have nation-wide members of the Noah staff been united in one place to meet, mingle and learn – we hope there will be many more such opportunities. We have teamed up with the vivacious Sarina Condello, founder of The Big Little Caravan of Joy, who will facilitate our time together along with an impressive array of speakers and performing artists to educate and empower us in our efforts to invest in the future of each Noah child.

This conference was born from the realisation that we need to empower and instil a sense of joy and confidence in Noah children, not merely investing in their social welfare. The children of today hold tomorrow in their hands. Through our making a difference today, they will reap the rewards into the future. We need to make sure their childhood is balanced, joyful and positive. Where their spirit is shredded, let us mend it. Where their hope is destroyed, let us recreate it. Where they have sorrow, let us bring them happiness. Where they are vulnerable, let us protect them. And let us teach them that they can own their own future. Too many children have to endure pain and disillusionment due to their circumstances, and if through our work, we can set our children on a path of upliftment and joy, we will begin to see a shift in the communities we serve.

Critical role-players to bring about this shift are Noah’s child care workers and ark managers, who dedicate themselves to caring for the well-being of our children. The hours devoted to caring for the vulnerable are many, and so often the burden is overwhelming, but we acknowledge here that they are the catalysts for change.

Our conference will allow for the spirit of every child we serve to be revived - giving them the freedom to be the children they are, the knowledge that they have the right to play, and the understanding that even through their trials and tribulations, there is happiness to be found. Our child care workers and ark managers will also benefit from a renewed sense of hope and joy.

Noah would like to extend its heartfelt thanks to Sarina Condello for her fundraising for and facilitation of this conference, as well as the infectious and continued energy that she brings to the greater project. We would also like to thank USAID and PEPFAR for their financial and material support of the conference, and each and every organiser, sponsor, donor, speaker and performer who has given of their time and/or resources to help us invest in the Noah child. Further gratitude is extended to participants and guests external to Noah whom we hope will enjoy, contribute to and take something away from the conference. Lastly, and unequivocally, we would like to thank the Noah staff who are here to learn from and to grow during this unique conference, and who will take this knowledge back to the communities we serve thereafter.

Our aim over the next 2 days is, through the power of the arts, to reinforce the importance and relevance of playful experiences for the Noah child, to expand the skills of the Noah child care workers and Ark managers and to empower them with renewed understanding and meaning in working with children. It takes just one small spark to light a roaring fire!

Karen Krakowitzer

CEO, Nurturing Orphans of AIDS for Humanity