Freshly Ground Opens Elgin’s Hope Paul Cluver Summer Season




Elgin’s very own forest amphitheatre at Paul Cluver Wines is gearing up to launch its first gig for the Hope@PaulCluver season. The beloved South African band Freshlyground will be the opening concert beneath the stars on Saturday, 14 November 2015.


Also supporting Freshlygound is singer Paige Mac (from Studio 7) as well as Zion Zuke (from Africa Voices Trust). Hope@PaulCluver has partnered with Africa Voices Trust and the Rural Arts Network to include more local and undiscovered talent. The marimba talents of the local De Rust School (via Rural Arts Network) and the voices of the ladies at ThembaCare Grabouw Hospice will form part of the programme on 14 November.


Set in a cluster of towering Eucalyptus trees, the intimate venue is ideal for friends and families to bring along cushions and blankets and settle into the unreserved seating – where everyone in the audience will find themselves up close with the action.


Patrons can bring their own picnics or purchase food at the event. Food vendors include For the Love of Food’s truck, pizza from Ishushu and a sushi bar. Ticket holders are not permitted to bring in their own drinks but wine will be available from the host venue, Paul Cluver, along with their signature Cluver Jack cider, craft beer from Triggerfish Brewery, various soft drinks and coffee from Seattle Coffee. 


The ticket price is R250 per person (available on Computicket) and the gates will open at 5pm. The main act performs at 7pm. Patrons wanting to stay in the area can contact Elgin Valley Tourism021 848 9838 to explore accommodation options. For group transport solutions call Gaffley’s on 021 859 2561.


The next concert after Freshlyground will be Bobby van Jaarsveld on 12 December. The season’s full programme is available on




Thembalitsha is the beneficiary of all profits made from the Hope@PaulCluver concerts. The Elgin Valley is an area of extreme need. 40% of households live below the poverty line on less than R2000 a month. With a massive migrant population due to the seasonal nature of farm employment, the valley struggles to cope with the social and medical issues that arise from the poverty and the large-scale informal settlements that have rapidly developed.


Thembalitsha’s mission is to provide hope by developing disadvantaged people to a point of self-reliance through the provision of healthcare, education and training. They invest in communities throughout the Cape and currently manage nine projects, three of which operate within the Elgin Valley and respond specifically to the essential needs of the area:

ThembaCare Grabouw serves as the only overnight 24-hour hospice facility in a town of 65,000. This seven-bed hospice is designed to provide quality palliative care for those who are terminally ill and whose lives have been devastated by HIV/AIDS, TB and cancer. They also have a large team of home-based carers who make weekly visits to more than 350 people living with HIV, TB and other chronic illnesses in the townships of Grabouw as well as offering free counselling and testing to the community.


The Village of Hope provides a safe and loving home for children infected or affected by HIV/AIDS or TB on a farm in the rural town of Grabouw, South Africa. The twelve-bed Children’s Unit has served as a haven for dozens of children over the last six years – some for very short periods of time and others for several years.


EduCare Grabouw is Thembalitsha’s new Early Childhood Development (ECD) project in Grabouw. This exciting initiative contributes to meeting a critical community need: essential ECD centres for children who otherwise would not receive adequate training and education. Through a network of renovated or newly built EduCare facilities, hundreds of children under the age of five and their teachers will receive quality training.


Until recently the area had a known HIV infection rate of 35% but thanks to the hard work of Thembalitsha and other organisations working in the community this rate has been greatly reduced.


The Paul Cluver Estate is a family-owned, family-operated wine estate also based in the Elgin Valley. The family has owned the property since 1896, and are recognised as pioneers of wine in the area. They focus on producing elegant wines that are expressive of the terroitory that have earned them numerous awards locally and internationally.



Says Paul Cluver IV, Managing Director of Paul Cluver Wines:

‘Paul Cluver Wines is proud to dedicate the amphitheatre not only to arts but also to the support and development of the community by supporting Thembalitsha.  We are honoured to be able to partner with such amazing people who give so selflessly to make a difference in the Elgin community.’


Says Frank Christie, Founder of Thembalitsha:

‘I am so excited about Hope@PaulCluver.  I see this collaboration as an opportunity to inspire others to maximise their areas of influence in order to make a difference in our community.’



With the support of our partners, Paul Cluver Wines, The Department of Arts and Culture, Appletiser and BASA, last summer’s season succeeded in generating a lot of publicity for Thembalitsha’s cause as well as R500,000 in much needed funds.

Using this money Thembalitsha has been able to:

Cover the annual salaries of three Village of Hope House Moms – dedicated ladies who provide constant care for children in a temporary place of safety – in addition to providing resource materials for their weekly support group for chronically ill adolescents.

Subsidise the salaries of both the In-Patient Unit Manager and Out-Patient Nursing Sister at ThembaCare Grabouw and purchase new mobile-blood pressure machines to equip their Home-Based Carers as they visit patients around town.

Assist in up-skilled training for teachers at the EduCare Grabouw centres and establishing and cultivating a garden at one of the locations.

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