Ox droppings!

 Proverbs 14 verse 4
Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty, but from the strength of an ox comes an abundant harvest. 

This verse is quite insightful in the daily running of a project like the Cradle Ark.

I usually try to avoid any negatives in my feedback because quite honestly it doesn’t do much other than demotivate me. That’s not to say there are not significant challenges along the way but it is comforting to know that turning to the Lord and His Word provides the answer. It usually just takes a bit of looking! People are people and we have all fallen and remembering this just makes it a little easier to deal with “Ox droppings” The verse reminds me to expect them on a continuous basis but with an abundant harvest to follow!

Early wake up call!

I woke up at 4 am realising that I had not yet sent out the update. It has been worrying me for a while !

There has been a lot of background activity and although the updates tend to focus on the farming and the crops, this is a small part of the overall project. Ed and I try to operate firstly on what we feel God is telling us but also taking our direction from the Cradle of Hope.  We were fortunate enough to have a strategic meeting with Melodie and Albertus and their experience and input is invaluable.

So what has happened since our last newsletter?  I realise that I could write up a couple of pages so without going into too much detail, I will cover what I can.


The much anticipated screening of a program on the Cradle of Hope took place on Kyknet. There were some shots of the CradleArk project so if any of you did see the program, please feel free to give some feedback.

Stanley Black and Decker

As mentioned in the last update, we were blessed by Stanley Black and Decker with a donation of power tools work benches and many other useful items.

These were used by another NGO for training purposes and our brief was to collect them as soon as possible because they valuable items were slowly vanishing. This meant that we had to firstly find a storage space, get to Germiston , collect them (a significant amount) and then set up the workshop. They will be used to train and upskill people. A variation of where we thought we were going with the addition direct “formal” training but immediately embraced and supported by the Cradle of Hope. Pretty exciting stuff!

We could not turn down the donation! The current home needed them removed and we had to make a lot happen very quickly. We collected the most valuable tools and placed them in storage in a container on a temporary basis. We then had to find a more permanent solution .

To this end the Lord has even provided storage space and we are now in process of doing a full inventory. We will then to set up the workshop. We have also been blessed with someone who has not only provided the family double garage but has fetched the tools from where they were temporarily stored ! Thankyou Lord and thank you to that person. (I have not received their permission to mention names but maybe that will follow in the next feedback) They have also shown interest in being involved in the training.


The farming has continued enthusiastically. A lot has been harvested and the harvesting continues this week.

A portion of the mielies have been harvested
The sweet potato crop is magnificent
Some of the sweet potato variants

We have bought a much larger brush cutter and this has been put to good use as we are being hemmed in by long grass making the project pretty untidy.

Whilst the cutting allows a more structured approach , reduces fire hazard and makes it easier to get to the field , we also are collecting and creating our compost heaps. The largest next to the field is slowly gaining size.

The water pump was taken in for a full service and the Lord has provided us good rains whilst the pump was out of action. Pastor Matthew is focussing more on his ministry and little less on the farming but we have been blessed with Elias who is taking up the slack and assisting Samson.

It was lovely to see the service in action yesterday! We have also been blessed with a donor of bibles in various languages that were requested by pastor Matthew and we expect to collect these within the next few weeks.

We have been blessed by a donor of various winter seed and we have had the team cleaning and preparing an area for this planting. It has taken some lengthy discussion with the farming team to explain that they can harvest the entire crop and not keep some back to produce seed for the next season! Once more a learning experience from both sides as to why every last bit of produce had not been harvested.

The cleared section for the winter crops with a south western boundary of sugarcane

Until next time God bless all of you, may He protect you and your families and give you His peace.


  1. Great report back Pete, well done to you and your team. Its good seeing the harvest and must surely be such an encouragement for the workers and the surrounding residents. God bless.

  2. Hi Pete, really well done to you and the team! It is amazing to see the progress. I am sure that Steve would be delighted to see what has been achieved. Suggest that you send him the link. God bless you for what you are doing. Cheers

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