Dear Friends of the Butterfly Centre,

I apologise for the lack of communication from my side. As for many, it’s been a bit of a crazy time!

The Butterfly Centre is back up and running, all the children have returned and are absolutely thriving in their new environment here on the farm.
When I did the Lighthouse2Lighthouse walk in March we raised enough to proceed with Phase 2 of our building. However, 2020 is a year which has not gone according to plan!
Covid and the resulting lockdown meant a series of delays, as builders had a backlog of work and projects to attend to. There is also currently a shortage of materials adding to the challenges.

We have managed to fully complete phase 1, including blinds, flooring, landscaping etc to create an absolutely magical space of which we are very proud.

With December already upon us, it is time for us to accept that completion of Phase 2 will not happen this year, but we have a builder lined up to do the job in early 2021. The necessary funds are safely in an interest bearing account until we begin building.
I feel personally responsible and really apologise to you all for the delay, I hope that you will understand, given the most unusual circumstances of this year. Of course, you will be kept up to date every step of the way when we do proceed with Phase 2. We would not have been able to complete the move to Stanford Hills without the support of out main sponsors Nussbaum and L2L, and we cannot wait to show how much we can achieve with the balance of funds when the time allows.

Education and learning remain the very heart of what we do, but here on the farm there are so many ways to learn! The children have been working together on preparing beds, planting vegetables and harvesting our crops.

They also have to take care of and feed our ducks, bunnies and chicken, as well as cleaning up the enclosure.
We are learning all about Stanford and what the area offers so that we understand the history and be good ambassadors for this special village of ours.

Plenty of art being done too, look out for news about our planned exhibition early next year.
The Board has received numerous requests already from parents who are unable to afford full fees for 2021, as the current pandemic as affected everyone financially. Thus, fundraising remains vital for the coming year, as we work towards self-sustainability.

Stanford Hills sponsored a Christmas party for the children and staff of The Butterfly Centre on board the African Queen river boat. So much excitement and joy to watch!
One boy in particular, came to me with sparkling eyes, having never been on a boat before. “Look, Jami, look at the long water!”, he said, pointing in excitement at the river surrounding him. I thought back to the boy who joined us a couple of years ago, non verbal. Lost. Confused. Struggling to manage his behaviour. And I see him today, so confident, communicating, playing and thriving. And it makes all the hard work worthwhile.

Thank you to each and every one of you who have been a part of this, and continue to support the project.

A very merry Christmas to you all, stay safe and see you in 2021.
With SO much love

Jami and the team at the Butterfly Centre

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