Those Are Some Happy Feet

<This is Part 2 of the Langa Township Post – A Rainy Day in Cape Town’s ‘Sun’ Township>

The Happy Feet portion was one of our primary motivators for booking this tour. In addition to managing Imivuyo Tours, Chippa also runs this community youth dance program. We’re typically not huge ‘kids’ people, but oh man were they cute! We probably could have spent the whole day watching them dance and couldn’t get over how quickly our 1.5hr visit went!

It's time for Happy Feet!

It’s time for Happy Feet!

Here’s a little background on Happy Feet:

Happy FeetHappy Feet Youth Project is a NPO founded in 2007 by Chippa Mbuyiseli Mngangwa, Siviwe Mbinda and Nathi Buzwe in an effort to provide a safe after school environment for the children of this community. Through their work as tourist guides in Langa, they saw an opportunity to further develop the mentor relationships they had with a small group of children. They paired responsible tourism and gumboots dance together as a catalyst to enable psychosocial and concrete benefits for the children. The participants are required to balance their school work with their participation in the Happy Feet activities, as well as be mindful to how they carry themselves within the community. The program includes approximately 70 boys and girls ages 3-20. Through dedication and hard work Happy Feet has performed at conferences, traditional ceremonies, hotels, universities, dance competitions, museums, and in parliament. The funding Happy Feet receives goes towards uniforms, traditional instruments, a feeding scheme, school fee and material support, and Happy Feet outings and functions. In addition to the dance activities Happy Feet also provides lunch once a week to more than 400 township children.

I could go on and on talking about how amazing these kids were or how much their carefree attitudes lifted our spirits, but I feel like it would come off sounding insincere and exaggerated. So instead I’m just going to let the photos and videos speak for themselves. I will just leave you with one final message…if you’re going to Cape Town do yourself a favor and don’t miss the amazing opportunity to get to know these kids. Enjoy!

From the moment I stepped out of the car this little girl never let go of my hand.

From the moment I stepped out of the car this little girl never let go of my hand.

A few literally attached themselves to Adam as well.

A few literally attached themselves to Adam as well.

They all LOVED the camera...

They all LOVED the camera…

...and Adam's sunglasses :).

…and Adam’s sunglasses :).

Once the music was ready everyone took their seats. Many of which decided that would be my lap.

Once the music was ready everyone took their seats. Many of which decided that would be my lap.

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A few of the little kids tried to get into the action and play along.

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The men/boys performed traditional gumboot dancing.

It was amazing to watch Chippa with all of the kids. They all lit up when he was around.

It was amazing to watch Chippa with all of the kids. They all lit up when he was around.

The teenage girls were amazing! I wonder how long I'd have to stay to get half that good.

The teenage girls were amazing! I wonder how long I’d have to stay to get half that good.

After a while a number of the kids began to use Adam like a jungle gym.

After a while a number of the kids began to use Adam like a jungle gym.

And he began to use them like free weights :)

And he began to use them like free weights 🙂

Rallying the kids together at the end for one final shot was quite the challenge. This was the best one we got.

Rallying the kids together at the end for one final shot was quite the challenge. This was the best one we got.

 Check out our special private performance by some of the Happy Feet kids:

 

To learn more about the township/Happy Feet tour visit: http://www.imivuyo.co.za/townshiptour.html

After a few days of being lazy in Cape Town, catching up on the blog and recovering from our whirlwind arrival from Morocco, Adam’s mom & her husband came to visit and ‘sponsored’ us for 9 days! First stop on the SueAnne and Terry Tour – Hout Bay and Penguins!

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