Hilltop-Centre Tree
  • Hilltop Farm Landscape

    Hilltop Farm Landscape

    Hilltop is located outside the village of Hanover, near Bhisho, the capital of the former homeland, Ciskei, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.

  • Volunteer Program

    Volunteer Program
    Volunteer Program

    Hilltop has for many years in the post-apartheid era encouraged a program of volunteerism to play a part in reconstructing a new path for South Africa.

  • Woody Cape Holiday Resort

    Mandela

    Situated right next to the Indian Ocean, this resort is the perfect escape for those looking for a place to spend some relaxing days.

    Whether it is superb fishing or exellent hiking opportunities, there is a lot to discover in the area!

  • Xhosa Culture

    Xhosa

    The Transkei, home to the Xhosa people, is the only part of the country still governed by tribal authorities, and most of the region's inhabitants maintain a traditional lifestyle. The Xhosa people live in the traditional way, with ancient tribal systems still intact.

    The people live in thatched mud-brick huts peppered across the hills, without running water or electricity, and subsist through growing mainly maize.

  • Addo Elephant National Park

    Addo

    More than 450 elephants, 400 Cape buffalo, over 48 endangered black rhino as well as a variety of antelope species are situated in the Addo Elephant National Park.

    Lion and spotted hyena have also recently been re-introduced to the area. The largest remaining population of the flightless dung beetle is located within the park.

March 2017

Welcome Beatrice Felber to South Africa

2017-03-12 14:29 by Robin Roberts

It is with great pleasure that we welcome Beatrice who has arrived at the Daily Bread, a chilld youth care centre for abandoned, abused and orphaned children. Beatrice recently retired from working at the University Hospital in Basel. She spent several months planning for her 6 month volunteer plan. She successfully applied for 5 sewing machines plus on overlocker, all new from Bernina in South Africa which have been donated, organized for the Daily Bread. The Daily Bread management team has provided a new large room for her training workshop and classes. Beatrice will be trainging older youth in design, pattern making plus sewing intensively to prepare them with a real skill when they leave at the age of 18 year old. She will also add some culinary and confectionary training to her programme. The Daily Bread management is excited about Beatrice and she will be living on the premisses at Daily Bread with the children and childcare workers.

Hilltop Launches into 2017

2017-03-12 08:18 by Robin Roberts

International Four Day Confernce at Woody Cape January 2017 - Hilltop assisted in the Co-willing International Ecomonic Developement Conference where the focus was on innovative African solutions to alternative energy supply, waste management, vocational skills training, agri industries and good governance. Experts from around the world made valuable contributions which was well recieved by an audience comprising of ambassordors, local goverment leadership, NGO's, financial institutions and developement practionaers from around the world. There were 70 guests by special invitation in attendence. The conference focused on solutions and clear action plans. This objective was achieved through key outcomes and commitments. The chief organizers Susi Gubler of Switzerland and President of Co-willing together with Rommel Roberts Director of Hilltop Empowerment Centre were amazed at the enthusiasm and of the energy of the delegates and the positive follow-up that has already occured. Susi and Rommel were interviewd by the South African SABC National News and all its radio stations reaching 20 million people. The conference was an enormous success!  

Bicycles from Switzerland Rural Transportation Project - There has progress on the project Mr. Marc Freyer a volunteer from Germany who recently resigned from a top bicycle company in Germany in order to  be of service to Hilltop where he had been a volunteer 17 years ago in one Hilltop''s volunteer workcamps. Marc has serveral years of bike technology experience and has occuppied several top managment positions within the industry in the last 10 years. Marc has focused on training local youth and has assisted in the accessment and preparation of all bicycle stock as well as the promotion of bicycles. He recently expanded the bicycle empowerment to the Woody Cape region where farm workers have now benefited and guests of the nature lodge.

See our Facebook page for more about Marc and his successful experience with the bike project.

Daily Bread Children's Home - Ursina Badilatti and her mother Francesca - These two women decided to take time from their busy lives in Germany and Switzerland to open their hearts and offer their time to care for the children at Daily Bread for a two week period. This daughter mother team met with the staff of the childrens home to determine the needs  of the children and staff in order to be most helpful and effective. Urisna and her mother brought great joy to the children by making gaint size pizzas which lead to joyful pizza parties! Also assisting with the computer lab with laptops, playing games, reading stories offering lots of hugs and smiles which was an amazing experience. Ursina and her mother grew to understand the special needs of the children and how clocks and watches play a huge role in time keeping and how sports plays a large role in the childrens lives. There was a deep sense of appreciation by the children and staff for all that Ursina and Francesca did during their stay at the Daily Bread. Wonderful relationships based on a deep sense of trust by the children and the love that Ursina and Francesca gave that created special memories and bonds to last a lifetime.  Thank you to our speical friend Ursina and her mom for making a difference and their efforts for being very positive roles models in influencing these children with such caring motivations to raise the spirits and self-esteem of the Daily Bread kids with the staff''s great appreciation. It could be said that in this experience of voluntary service: Love finds a way. 

Susi and Robin Post Conference Meander - Susi Gubler and Robin Roberts went on a development tour to follow up focusing on the Platfontien computer centre and meeting with the CPA, Community Properties Association in Platfontien outside of Kimberly. Then travelling to Lesutho to Semonkong a great example of a successful model of rural tourism developement. Driving down from the high mountains to the small town of Roma to visit the directors and staff of a vocational skills training institution where a number of skills are taught such as the art of brick laying, building of houses, english language and sewing. Interestingly both men and women train in all the subjects where one's sex does not determine the career skilling process.

Traveling onto Johnannesburg, Susi and Robin met with excutives from The Department of Trade and Industry in Pretoria regarding the Co-willing conference and initiatives. An indepth meeting of 4 hours revealed many possibilties of future developements, ending the day with a late luch to confirm the fruitful points of the meeting and continued conversations of the way forward with sustainable develpement partnering.

At the University of Johanessburg Susi and Robin were asked to give a lecture on economic develpement statiges out of the Co-willing conference and sharing of development experiences in the feild  with 4th year honours students in the studies of humanities, community and social work.

Finally completing travels with an exotic experience of Namibia which was touristic. Namibia was a view on how tourism is being developed. The vibrancy of the youth and their professionlism and how tourism is managed is impressive, handling visitors from all around the world. Susi and Robin identified many young adults which seemed to fit into the vision of Co-willing and several aspiring and motivated young adults whom have a vision for themselves and the future of Namibia. Also, their needs and desires to bring the use of renewable energy sources into the country with the Co-willing network. There were many synergies and confirming experiences that led to the idea and knowledge that there is a wide network of people who wish to make a difference in Namibia within the framework of what Co-willing is about and would like to achieve.