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Thembelihle Primary School Receives Hope: Wonderbag



On the 16th of June 2016, two Durban based companies, Wonderbag and Durban’s five-star Oyster Box Hotel, launched their first educational and economic-inclusive initiative for underprivileged communities in South Africa. The launch of the first phase of this ambitious initiative fittingly took place on Youth Day at Thembelihle Primary School in Howick to the parents of pupils who come from impoverished communities. The invited 300 parents enjoyed a tasty and healthy Wonderbag-cooked meal amidst lots of singing and uplifting educational demonstrations provided by Wonderbag’s activation teams. Not only did the local families leave with full stomachs and hearts, they were also the delighted recipients of subsidised Wonderbags for their homes.

Sarah Collins, Founder and CEO of Wonderbag, addressed the receptive crowd and acknowledged the importance of this momentous occasion being the 40th anniversary of the Sharpeville uprising as well as the significance for her of launching this community model in her hometown of Howick. “Howick is a very special place to me as it was here that I spent a few years learning from Dr Ian Player about my life’s purpose while living on his farm in the Karkloof. I believe that just like Hector and all the brave children who actively went about affecting change this day forty years ago – so too do we all have the power within us to improve our lives and that of our family’s and community. We want to protect our future leaders from the harsh realities and dangers of indoor air pollution and shack fires. So many children living in these communities face these dangers on a daily basis when trying to cook for themselves on open flames while their parents are working long hours to contribute to their family’s wellbeing. Thembelihle Primary School is a beacon of light to this inspiring community and is making a major impact on the lives of so many young people who come from a difficult living situation. We hope that through our partnership with them we can make even a small but significant difference to the lives of these children and their families through the power of the Wonderbag and it’s many end-user benefits,” Sarah shared.

Wonderbag as a brand is intrinsically linked to enhancing the overall quality of people’s lives through the many health, safety, economic and time-saving benefits of the product. The company has a history of empowering communities with women being identified as the key caregivers for families and communities across all races and classes. It’s also no secret that Collins’ has a passion for finding ways to empower people living in hard circumstances, which is why she was “overwhelmed” with the success of the first activation working with an established and reputed school and community organisation like Thembelihle Primary School.

Thembelihle Primary School is run independently and relies purely on donations to sustain its operations that cater for vulnerable children in the greater Howick region. The school also has ties to other community-focused centres that cater to the needs of the people living in this region. According to Principal Damon Shaw, this school is more than just an educational centre for Howick’s children and further serves the needs of the community as a safe haven. “The school’s name means ‘good hope’ and we are very proud of the trust and reputation we have earned from the families living here as they openly regard us as a beacon of hope to the community. We not only strive to provide our learners with a great education in the traditional sense, but we also provide them with a holistic life education which includes assisting with health care, emotional support and counselling as well as feeding them nutritional meals and providing health supplements to our students. Our school’s cook was given a big catering Wonderbag from Sarah and her team and she now swears by it for all the school’s cooking needs,” Shaw stated.

There are many instances and success stories already about how Thembelihle Primary School has helped countless children and their families overcome a variety of issues ranging from health to educational deficiencies. According to the school’s Chairman, Carolyn Hancock, the partnership of Wonderbag and The Oysterbox Hotel is a hugely exciting one with countless benefits to be had for the school and the community at large. “We are so grateful already to the generosity of both these entities. The Oysterbox Hotel not only covered the costs for the food provided at the Youth Day Wonderfeast, but they also donated an additional R25 000 which went towards covering the tuition of five of our learners for the year. The Wonderbag’s incredible donation of Wonderbags (valued at R90 000) has gone towards raising funds for the sustainability of our school. Sarah and I are both firm believers based on our experiences that the most effective form of empowerment to disadvantaged communities is through the provision of resources and knowledge, which will enable them to constructively improve the state of living of their families. That’s why during the Wonderfeast each family that attended was given a bag at a minimal cost, along with knowledge on how to derive the most benefit from the product. Our families were delighted to pay something for receiving a Wonderbag as it will not only benefit their own families, but the proceeds are also going straight back into their contributing to the operating expenses of the school – an important contribution for our parents who highly value the level of education offered to their children at Thembelihle,” explained Hancock.

Collins added, “By insisting that these families make a small contribution towards ‘buying’ their own Wonderbag they will appreciate the product much more and the likelihood is they will also use it regularly. That’s ultimately what we want because we know first-hand how this product can help enhance their lives in so many small but meaningful ways. This particular activation and launch with Thembelihle is a model that we would like to replicate across South Africa and eventually into Africa. We have seen the power and effectiveness of the Wonderbag with over 1 million bags already sold around the world and we know first-hand how this simple but revolutionary product can help communities in areas that are faced with poverty, health issues and a shortage of fuel resources.”

Thembelihle Primary School is just one of the centres in this area, which has become a pillar of strength within the Howick community. Also affiliated to the school is the Angels Care Centre which has a pre-school, a bridging class for children who have never had the chance to attend school, an aftercare programme for students to obtain assistance with their studies, a weekly feeding programme for over 300 children as well as a reputable crisis centre for children who are victims of gender based violence.

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REVIEW: Hilton Hotel Umhlanga Arch



Hilton Garden Inn is the first of its kind in South Africa, situated at the new Umhlanga Arch, welcoming both local and international guests. Durbanite recently experienced first hand what they have to offer.

From the moment you walk in, you experience a relaxed environment, making you feel right at home. The Hilton Garden Inn Umhlanga Arch is a technologically advanced hotel, allowing guests to check in, select and unlock your room, as well as access the guest lift, easily from your mobile phone. The hotel boasts a fitness centre, outdoor swimming pool with a great view of the upcoming developments in the area as well as the stunning sea Durban has to offer, as well as a laundry room and currency exchange for international guests.

The staff at the Hilton Garden Inn Umhlanga Arch are friendly and extremely helpful and have adopted a “Brightheartered Hospitality” approach.

“It was amazing, the staff remember your name, they learn more about why you are visiting and really go out of their way to make your experience a memorable one.” Commented Bianca Hauser, Durbanite contributor.

There are 203 rooms kitted out with coffee and tea brewers, a flat screen HDTV, a hairdryer, iron and ironing board (perfect for out of town guests), along with a mini refrigerator. Hilton Garden Inn Umhlanga Arch ensure to adhere to Covid-19 safety regulations by cleaning rooms before check in as well as after check out. They are currently participating in the Hilton CleanStay Program with Lysol Protection to deliver an even cleaner and safer experience for guests.

“I really felt comfortable during these times, as once staff clean a room, they have the Hilton CleanStay Room Seal that indicates to us that a room has not been accessed since it was cleaned and disinfected.”

The hotel ensures sufficient spacing in the dining hall and hand sanitizers can be found throughout the hotel. Guests are encouraged to use disposable gloves provided when dishing up salad for the meals and the Chefs are responsible for dishing up dinner, limiting exposure.

Together & Co aims to bring people together, “one meal, coffee and conversation at a time”. Those who are not guests at the hotel are also welcome to dine at the restaurant or have a drink at the bar. Hilton Garden Inn Umhlanga Arch also boasts a 24-hour self-service retail space, “The Shop”, which offers snacks, locally sourced food and beverages as well as essential personal items, should guests need anything.

To book your stay, visit their website.

1 Ncondo Place, Umhlanga Ridge Umhlanga

Durban, 4320, South Africa



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Distillery 031’s new creation : The D’Urban Scarlet Gin



Adding to their range of award -winning craft distilled gins, Distillery 031 are proud to announce their latest colourful creation, the D’Urban Scarlet Gin.

The D’Urban Scarlet Gin is the world’s first gin made with cascara or coffee cherries. Cascara is the red, fleshy covering around the coffee bean which adds a subtle berry note to the gin without being overpowering. The Cascara also infuses a gorgeous scarlet colour to the gin giving it a very Festive feel.


We are giving away 1 x Gift Box of D’Urban Scarlet Gin, to enter simply leave a comment below. *Std. T&C’s apply.

The Gift Box contains:-
– 1 x bottle of D’urban Scarlet Gin (750ml)
– 1 x Rose-gold metal jigger for pouring your Gin in style
– 1 x Cocktail recipe booklet to help you unleash your inner mixologist

Distillery 031 has joined forces with Beaver Creek Coffee Estate on the KZN South Coast in this revolutionary new gin. This exciting gin is crafted in small batches and carries a respectable 43% alcohol content.

The newcomer is South Africa’s most internationally awarded gin, having won gold medals in New York, London and San Francisco. It joins two other award-winning gins from the Distillery 031 stills, the D’Urban Dry Gin and the D’Urban Barrel Aged Gin. 031 was recently awarded the South African Distillery of the Year 2018 in the New York International Spirit Competition.

Situated in the hub of Durban’s Station Drive, Gin pioneers Distillery 031 have been picking up an armful of coveted international and locally awards for their original spirits created on-site.

A decade in the making after distilling its first experimental batch in 2008, this year has become an award-winning vintage for the bespoke Durban distillery. 031 is owned by Andrew Rall who is passionate about creating craft spirits that offer a distinctly Durban unique flavour.

The Distillery offers tours with the option of tasting the fine spirits manufactured onsite. It also is a bespoke functions venue with a fabulous cocktail bar.

For more info visit or contact them on 087 941 4540.


*Competition Terms and Conditions.

  1. Comment below to stand a chance of winning one bottle of D’Urban Scarlet Gin.
  2. Competition opens on 27 December 2018 and closes at midday on 14th January 2019, South African Standard Time.
  3. Winner will be randomly drawn on 14th January 2019. Durbanite reserves the right to change the draw date.
  4. Winner will be notified via email. Should winner not respond after three attempts to contact, a redraw will take place.
  5. Winner will need to arrange to collect their prize from Durbanite representative.
  6. Winner must be over the age of 18 years old. Proof of ID will be required.
  7. Subject to these competition rules, Durbanite’s determination of the winners is final. No correspondence will be entered into.
  8. The prizes are non-transferable for cash. If you are the winner, a copy of your South African identity document or passport may be required as proof that you are in fact the winner whose name was drawn.
  9. By entering this competition you agree to all the terms and conditions stated above.
  10. Employees, agents of or consultants to Durbanite and, their immediate family members (parents, children, brothers and sisters), spouse(s), life partners, business partners and associates are excluded from this competition.
  11. Failure to comply with any of these Terms and Conditions will result in immediate forfeiture of the prize.


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OneCart has launched in KZN!



Have you ever wished you could order groceries online and not have to go to the shops?
Well, thanks to OneCart it’s now possible!

OneCart has been operating in JHB and Cape Town, and have now launched their service to the following areas in KZN:
Ballito, Durban North, La Lucia, Morningside, Musgrave, Umhlanga and surrounding areas.


A few of us at the Durbanite office decided to try out OneCart to see what the hype was about.
We logged into their website and were prompted to enter our delivery address.

OneCart then provided us with stores we could shop from. We decided to go with just Pick ‘n Pay.
Although you can shop from multiple stores in one go which is awesome!


It was then time to select our products – we couldn’t believe how easy it was to simply click and add how many we wanted of the same product.

We were also surprised to find that some of the products were cheaper online than in the actual shop. Score!

After selecting our items, we scheduled for delivery to be for the following day between 5-6pm.
Side Note: You can choose to get your groceries delivered in 2 hours from when you first place your order, or you can choose any other day afterwards at a chosen time slot.

As soon as we placed our order, we received a confirmation email along with an SMS telling us who our shopper would be.

The following day we were kept up to date with SMS and email notifications. And sure enough, at 6pm on the dot, our shopper arrived with our order in cute, branded OneCart bags!

It is such an awesome service offered to KZN. A lot of us work full time and don’t have a lot of hours in the day to get grocery shopping done.

We will definitely be using OneCart again and again!

Did we mention that your first delivery with them is FREE?
Just use the coupon code ‘FREEDELIVERY’ on your first order upon checkout ️

You can also download their mobile app, available on iOS & Android.

So next time, order your groceries online and SAVE TIME!

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