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Vastfontein is a story of faith and obedience

Vastfontein Community Transformation was birthed in the heart of Johan Groblerone morning in 1998 when he had an encounter with God in his rondawel just after completing his morning devotions. Johan was making a cup of tea while looking out of the window of his rondawel and saw a drunk man slinging across the adjacent tar road. Johan felt an anger rise in his heart and started debating with God the uselessness of a new democratic government who has not made any relevant changes in 4-years time. God brought him to his knees, challenging him with his responsibility in the community he lives in. Johan repented and asked God what he could do. 

Johan not knowing what to do, approached the pastors at Moreletapark Church where he was a member. They came alongside him and together they planned a Jesus Film outreach. 40 community members attended the outdoor event on Johan’s 8.6 hectares of farmland, many of them responded positively to the gospel that evening. A church and Sunday school was birthed. After a couple of years, the community church members approached Johan with their need for a creche, so that they could go to the city to find work. Johan prayed and God confirmed the calling. Johan build the first classroom and had his domestic worker trained as a Christian creche teacher. The first 10 children started at the creche in 2003. The need for formal registration of a Non-Profit organisation also became apparent, Vastfontein Sending Projek was established and later renamed to Vastfontein Community Transformation (NPC) with an MOI and a board of directors.

In the meantime, the creche was growing and the first group of children graduated and went off to grade 1 in a farm school close by. Johan visited the school and became very uneasy because he realised that the Christian foundation that the children received in the crèche, was eradicated quickly. Although the school tried its best the classrooms were too full with up to 60 children per class with multiple grades in the same room. It was not long when the mothers called a meeting with Johan and told him that this is not working for them. The argued that he had provided their children with a good, private, value-based, Christian education in a

Peaceful small classroom environment which was now being destroyed in big classrooms with sub-standard levels of education and very little values and Christian input. The requested him to start a school. Johan went away and spent time with the Lord who confirmed that he should build a grade 1 class room. Grade 1 would become grade 2 and year-on-year grow into a fully-fledged primary school. During the time of growing the primary school, the need also arose for a training centre for lay pastors, as Johan encountered pastors with questions about the bible and doctrine. He came to realise that although many of them were passionate and definitely called for ministry, they did not have the money and in some cased the basic education to study theology. Once again Johan partnered with Moreletapark and a School of Church planting was started in 2008. More than 110 students had passed through this school by the end of 2018.

Another need that became very apparent is a place of safety and care home for orphans and vulnerable children. In 2010 the first care-home was built, a house mother appointed and 6 orphaned and/or vulnerable children were given a loving home. This project also grew and by 2014 three care homes were in operation. As the church, school, care homes and general community involvement grew, the need for support services also became apparent and a wellness centre was established. The services at the wellness centre include social services, a weekly pro-bono doctor rendering medical services as well as a weekly mobile clinic, counselling and psychological assessment and play therapy services and an occupational therapist giving her time to work with the children and equip the teachers to do follow up therapy during the week.

In 2013 the Lord gave Johan a vision to acquire adjacent land for a high school, and also provided the funding for the procurement. At this point Johan, his management team and growing staff complement realised the need for more formal process and structures, however, the pressure of this growing organisation also started taking its toll on Johan’s health. In the following couple of years, Johan made a strategic announcement to the board that a successor needed to be found to take over from him in due course.

In 2016 after a prolonged time of prayer and seeking Mathilda Fourie was appointed as the new CEO of Vastfontein, taking over from Johan who had taken up the role of Chairperson of the Vastfontein Board. In 2017 both Johan and Mathilda felt clearly that it was time to build the high school. Grades 8 and 9 was started on the current premises in 2018 and the high school building project kicked off. God provided once again in amazing ways and the first wing was completed at the end of 2018 and occupations was taken in January 2019 with 2 grade 8, 2 grade 9 and 1 grade 10 class totalling 70 learners. The high school building project continues as we write this account of the history of Vastfontein. An estimated forty-million-rand project with only two million completed. A strategic process is currently in progress to implement 21 st century learning at Vastfontein where learners will focus on getting ready to become contributors to the South African economy.

We look forward to seeing God’s continued provision and guidance as He guides us into a new season at Vastfontein Community Transformation. Our aim is to raise leaders, release potential and realise dreams.

In every community , there is work to be done. In every nation, there is wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it.

Marianne Williamson