#InspirationForTheNation this May

This month, my #InspirationForTheNation goes to Springfield Retail Centre!

“If we all do one act of random kindness daily, we just might set the world in the right direction.” – Michael Kornfeld

L-R: Lakehaven Child & Youth Care Centre staff and management – Xoliswa Shabalala, Michelle Van Rooyen, Himla Makhan (Manager) and Themba Mthembu with Elisabeth Pretorius (Property Manager under the Broll Property Group) who handed over the cash donation on behalf of Springfield Retail Centre.

As part of Africa Month 2018, which is celebrated in May, Springfield Retail Centre honoured the theme of this year’s celebration, being “The Year of Nelson Mandela: Building a Better Africa and a Better World”.

The centre and its management, donated R10 000 in cash to Lakehaven Child and Youth Care Centre based in Sea Cow Lake on Tuesday, 29 May, 2018.

The centre opened in 1958 and is a project of Child Welfare Durban and District. It currently cares for 42 children between the ages of 6 and 18 years of age who are abused, neglected and abandoned, and whom have been placed in the care of the Lakehaven staff by order of the court.

“Our aim is to provide children at risk with an environment that is stimulating, motivating and equip them with skills to become self-sufficient and positive leaders in the future. We are so grateful for this donation. I would like to say thank you to Springfield Retail Centre and appreciate you thinking of us and putting us first when it came to the donation, which we really need. The donation of R10 000 will be used for one of the cottages – for replacing appliances and whatever else is necessary to benefit the children in our care,” said Himla Makhan, Manager of Lakehaven Child and Youth Care Centre.

According to Property Manager under the Broll Property Group, Elisabeth Pretorius, who assisted in the handover, “We identified a need within the community and wanted to lend a helping hand by making a donation of cash, which is needed by worthy establishments such as this. We know it will go to good use.”

Visit http://cwdd.org.za/wish-list/lakehaven-child-and-youth-care-centre/ to see how you can do your part by making a donation.


Tips from the professionals: How to host a special event

Everyone loves to enjoy the company of friends and relatives especially at the time of celebrations, however for a host, there are usually many things that can keep you busy – from food servicing, sitting arrangements, decorations, and a whole lot more. 

All the above have equal importance to making an event successful; however, food has its own very special place, regardless of the type of event, be it a wedding, seminar, business event or birthday party. 

So if you are planning an event, remember the food is of vital importance. It’s not easy to play “host” and still have to prepare, present and serve the food. 

Luckily for those who are planning a party, there are companies that do the food prep and serving for you, leaving you to spend time with guests.

It is important to note that success of any event is in the attention to detail. This is where the experts come in. 

Blue Strawberry Caterers, have provided catering services in Durban at both corporate events and private functions for more than twenty years and they list some benefits associated with hiring professionals, like them, for your function! 

  • Time saver: It takes a lot of time to plan food arrangements. Along with the menu selection, preparation and presentation of selected food items, the quality of the food. Rather bring in the professionals who have experience in this area.


  • Worthy return on your investment: Contrary to what people think, hiring experienced caterers actually reduces the expenses of food presentation. They know what type and amount of ingredients are needed to serve all your guests, so there is less wastage. Moreover, you don’t have to go and shop for the ingredients. It’s all taken care of. 


  • Crockery and kitchenware availability: It is much easier when someone else has all the utensils for preparing, presenting, and serving food. This is also another saving.

  • No need to worry: Professional catering services relieve you from the worries of after party arrangements. Cleaning up after a party is a challenging task as it involves lots of things such as returning tables and chairs to rental services, cleaning of used utensils, and managing left-over food.




Supplier: Blue Strawberry Caterers

Location: Durban, KZN

Contact: 031 579 1463


Disclaimer: Featured Image supplied by Blue Strawberry Caterers

Granny Mouse is my #InspirationForTheNation this April!

Granny Mouse Country House & Spa is my #InspirationForTheNation this April! This is why: 

5 Chefs, 5 courses, 5 wines, all for a good cause!

Granny Mouse Country House and Spa is appealing to the public to get involved in their fundraising initiative for Heritage House PreschoolHowick, which is set to take place on Monday, 2nd April 2018 from 17h30

“Join us in a night of community outreach for one night only; all for Heritage House Pre-School,” said Sean Granger, General Manager of Granny Mouse Country House and Spa.

The event will showcase 5 chefs, a 5-course dinner as well as 5 wines and fabulous spot prizes, all for a good cause.

1st course will feature Smoked Duck Ice Cream, Orange Compote, Baby Potato Crisps with Pea Puree, Blueberries, Edible Flowers & Micro Greens prepared by Executive Culinary Artist Wayland Green (Granny Mouse Country House & Spa)

1st Course- Executive Culinary Artist Wayland Green

2nd course will be a Yorkshireman’s version of Samp & Beans, Wild Greens, Maas & Crispy Pulled Lambs Belly prepared by Head Chef Charlie Lakin (Camp Orchards Boutique Resort).

3rd course will feature a Trio of Heritage – Curried Line Fish served in a Pineapple Zulu Broth Crowned with a Savoury Squid Head Bobotie prepared by Chef & restaurant owner, Tim Lander (La Vita e)

4th course will be Grilled Midlands Beef, set upon a Vegetable & Potato Rosti with a Roasted Tomato & Fennel Chutney, served with Crumbed “Gourmet Greek” Black Brie, Marinated Artichokes & a Biltong Crisp, Drizzled with a Buchu Jus – prepared by Executive Chef Lorenzo Giliomee (Fordoun Hotel and Spa) (Vegetarian option available) 

4th course- Chef Lorenzo Giliomee

5th course is called Jou Ma Se Poeding” and features Butterscotch Banana Pannekoek with Melktert Macroons, Koeksister Ice Cream & Tamatie Konfyt Brule prepared by Chef and restaurant owner, Jen Pretorius (The Farmer’s Daughter)

All proceeds will go to the Heritage House Preschool which has been running for about 3 years and welcomes children from all backgrounds that live in and around the Midlands area. As with many schools there is a constant need to raise funds for maintenance and other unforeseen issues that crop up from time to time.

With charity, and the need to help others close to the hearts of the team at Granny Mouse Country House and Spa, they took it upon themselves to sponsor and host the evening at the hotel in an effort to raise funds for the school to show their support. They also made contact with Chef’s in the Midlands area and surrounds, as well as E by A for the décor, Hire Factor for the professional entertainment hire and music and KZN Wedding DJ’s for the photo booth – to provide lasting memories of another Midlands 1st!

We encourage everyone to book their seat at a cost of R800 per person for dinner or secure their stay over at Granny Mouse which includes the dinner at a cost of R3000 (per room). All rooms are set at the same price and are based on a 1st come 1st serve basis.

Email banqueting@grannymouse.co.za or call 033 234 4071 and speak to Veronica to make your booking or to make a donation. Seats are limited, so booking is essential.

Bank details for payments and donations are:

Heritage House Preschool (Pty)Ltd


Account 6267 6854 831

Reference: Number on invoice

Bookings are only confirmed upon receipt of full payment. Menus & Wines are set (vegetarian option available on 4th Course only).

No under 18’s. T’s & C’s apply.

Book now to help the cause!



The Phase 3 development almost completed

Liberty Midlands Mall recently hosted a pre-launch of their Phase 3 development which included a site visit of the area for both media and those involved in the development, on March 1st!

After years of planning and hard work from the project team, the construction of Liberty Midlands Mall’s Phase 3 development commenced in November 2016 and is to be completed and ready for trade on 15 March 2018.

The Phase 3 expansion will introduce retail and leisure space of almost 22,000m2, increasing the size of the mall to an impressive 78,000m2, parking space that will accommodate over 3,000 vehicles, and will ultimately welcome several ‘firsts to the PMB market’ retailers to the mall.

The expansion brings the tenant count to over 200 stores, and has provided the space for brands that could not previously be accommodated. These include Volpes, Coricraft, Pick ‘n Pay Clothing, Tekkie Town, The Hub, Just Plastics and Rochester, amongst others. RocoMamas and Mozambik will be two of the five restaurants in Phase 3’s indoor-outdoor, alfresco style dining offering. Phase 3 will be anchored by Checkers.

Firsts to the Pietermaritzburg market:

Mozambik, Toy Kingdom & Build A Bear, Volpes & @Home Livingspace.

Other confirmed tenants:

Coricraft, RocoMamas, Tekkie Town, Pizza Hut, Pick ‘n Pay Clothing, Cell Plus, Crazy Store, Mattress King, Checkers, Checkers Liquor, Rochester, The Hub, Gadget Paradise, Leather Gallery, Midlands Laser Clinic, Woolworths (extension), Just Plastics, Bargain Books, Absolute Pets and Arthur Ford.


Liberty Midlands Mall, located in Pietermaritzburg is the jewel of the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. With passion and inspiration drawn from the Zulu Kingdom, the mall is draped in African culture and pride.  Measuring an impressive 56, 000m2 it is the largest and most popular retail destination across the Pietermaritzburg area. Home to 168 local and global retail stores Liberty Midlands Mall offers a unique retail experience by fusing indigenous inspiration with international style through its assorted mix of fashion, food and leisure, attracting millions of shoppers each year.

Liberty Midlands Mall is currently adding the highly anticipated Phase 3 development. The scheme will include a significant expansion of the Woolworths store, a new Checkers store, and an al fresco dining area. Set to launch in March 2018, the expansion will further strengthen Liberty Midlands Mall’s position in Pietermaritzburg and the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, further increasing the mall’s appeal to locals and visitors alike. On completion of Phase 3, the size of the centre will increase to an impressive 78,000m2.

Liberty Midlands Mall is owned by Liberty Two Degrees and Liberty Group Limited, and managed by JHI Retail, part of Cushman & Wakefield Excellerate, one of Africa’s leading trusted provider of fully integrated, self-delivered property related solutions and services companies.

For more information please visit either www.midlandsmall.co.za, www.liberty2degrees.co.za, or www.cwexcellerate.com

Seen at the pre-launch were:

Gerald Schulz (Architect from Impendulo Design Architects) Muhammad Varachia (General Manager of Liberty Midlands Mall), Peter Lowe (Project Manager from Origin Project Management) & Vusi Hamese (Technical Manager of Liberty Midlands Mall).
Karen Unsted,Sasha Edel and Ursuhla Govender
Muhammad Varachia (General Manager) with Brian unsted (Assett Management Executive
Group image of Liberty Midlands Mall marketing, management and media that attended the site visit

Calling all Durbanites to take part in Starbucks sandcastle challenge this Saturday – November 18!

Durban’s Golden Mile is known for its sand castle sculptures – fun and funky creations by urban artists that not only show off the city’s landmarks and icons but even provide the odd sarcastic dig at the “hoi polloi” and happenings that are in the news.

Now, in preparation for the arrival of Starbucks in the city, the very newsmakers themselves will be squaring up for a sand castle building contest like no other together with anyone who is interested in spending time on the beach and joining in on the challenge.

Hosted by Starbucks and Durban Tourism on Saturday, November 18, this event will see the general public, together with well-known local print and online media as well as radio personalities swap their laptops and microphones for buckets and spades as they go up against each other and the Starbucks teams, representing the Florida Road store (opening on Saturday, November 25) and Gateway store opening early December), to burrow, mould and shape their way to a win – with fabulous Starbucks prizes up for grabs!

One journo who was found getting some tips from the professionals and honing her skills near the surf explained: “Rest assured, sand will fly before the day is over. We’re very competitive and each team will be determined to build the ultimate sandcastle. The only problem is that the last time I did this, I was about five!”

The sand castle clash starts at 8am and ends at 11am. Be sure to make your way to North Beach on the Golden Mile (opposite the skateboard park) to cheer on the participants and join in on some classic Durban fun in the sun.

For those interested in participating, register with sim@blackincevents.co.za  or come on the day to enjoy a fun-filled morning spending time with family and friends building sandcastles.



The Durban Wellness Festival takes place on Saturday, November 11, 2017. It is a true celebration of all things healthy with live music and an expo that not only aims to raise awareness about the scourge of diabetes in South Africa but also to encourage people to look after the one thing that money cannot buy – their health.

Diabetes may be the second highest cause of death in South Africa after tuberculosis but people are still in denial.

As most people only begin to look after their health when they have a scare and are forced to drastically stem their intake of fast food and begin exercising, the Durban Wellness Festival supported by SASA and Lilly has been created to show people that they can make positive, fun changes before it is too late.

The strong message from Jenny Russell, branch manager for Diabetes SA Durban, a non-profit organisation that provides support and wellness education for both diabetics and communities at large, is that diabetes is both preventable and manageable.

“Get tested at the Durban Wellness Festival so you can manage this silent killer or, better still, learn how to live a healthy life the fun way,” she suggests. DWF logo chosen3

“Join us for either a 5km Run or Walk, a variety of entertaining activities, and a live performance by Durban singer and songwriter, Holly Wasserfall who also happens to be a type 1 diabetic. This is a family affair, so everyone is welcome – even your pet dog. But on a leash, of course,” says Russell.

Taking place at the Durban Amphitheatre at the Bay of Plenty, the Durban Wellness Festival will open for registration at 10am. The Durban Wellness Festival officially kicks off at 2pm with the 5km walk and run starting at 4pm with the entire event finishing at 6pm with lucky draw spot prizes.

Russell adds that despite the light mood of the day, Diabetes SA will not be pulling any punches when it comes to driving home the reality of the diabetes pandemic.  “Diabetes has become known as the Tsunami of the 21st century, killing more people worldwide than AIDS and cancer combined. Our main objective is to bring diabetes into the spotlight, in the hope that it gains the recognition it deserves, instead of remaining in the shadow of HIV, AIDS and Cancer.”

To bring the message even closer to home, Russell states that the latest statistics received from a podiatrist doing her Master’s degree are absolutely shocking. “In 2014, 1,288,973 diabetic patients were registered in state health facilities alone in KwaZulu-Natal.  An unacceptable total of 2323 diabetic lower limb amputations were carried out between 2013 and 2014 in KZN. This amounts to six per day!” she points out.

When you have diabetes, your body is either unable to make enough insulin, or it is unable to correctly use the insulin it does make. As a result, the glucose in your bloodstream cannot move into your cells to be used as energy and thus creates a build-up, resulting in high glucose levels.

Damage caused by elevated blood glucose levels is irreversible. Diabetes has been linked to cardiovascular disease, stroke, eye disease, kidney disease, nerve damage, lower limb amputations, sexual dysfunction as well as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

2016 Statistics from the International Diabetes Federation, the World Health Organisation and the Centre for Disease Control paint an extremely depressing picture.

Worldwide, 415 million people were diagnosed as diabetic as opposed to 35 million patients with HIV and 14 million with cancer. Every six seconds a person dies from diabetes-related causes. Every 10 seconds two people develop diabetes and every 30 seconds, a lower limb is amputated due to diabetes related complications.

What is most startling, according to Russell is that statistics show that at least 50 percent of those with diabetes are unaware of their condition. “That means that those numbers are, in reality far higher. In some countries this figure may reach 80%. We have between 3 and 3.5 million diagnosed diabetics in South Africa. We also have an estimated 1.5 undiagnosed diabetics and approximately 1.5 to 2 million pre-diabetics in South Africa.”

Children are also not immune. Worldwide, every year, 70000 children under the age of 15 develop Type 1 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes in children is becoming a global public health issue with potentially serious outcomes. Thirty percent of children born since the year 2000 are expected to become diabetic if lifestyle changes are not made.

95 percent of all diabetics are type 2 with 90 percent of all complications experienced by type 2 diabetics. “What is so frustrating is that this is preventable if people eat healthy foods and exercise. Hence, it is important to get the message out there and to continually try to educate people to make good lifestyle choices for both themselves and their families,” she concludes.

Supporters of the 2017 Durban Wellness Festival are SASA who are committed to the prevention and treatment of non-communicable diseases in South Africa, as well as Lilly Diabetes, who have been a global leader in diabetes care since 1923 when they introduced the world‘s first commercial insulin. Ninety years later, they remain committed to meeting the needs of people with diabetes from medicines to support programs and more.

A major emphasis of Lilly’s work is to understand that people with diabetes should first be seen as individuals. Many of their programs and solutions are designed based on feedback from people who live with the illness every day.

The 5km Walk or the 5km Run costs just R60 per person with all proceeds going towards Diabetes SA Durban. Please note that this organisation is a self-funding organisation and does not receive any form of government funding and all proceeds raised go back into the education of this dreaded disease within KZN. The Wellness Expo is free to the public.

For further information about this event, please contact Pat Bonini on 082 499 5222 during office hours or via email at mw.nerve@mweb.co.za.


21151421_1517874914938059_1727263640661560250_nWith around 3,000 party goers taking to Hazelmere Dam in 2016, 2017 is sure to be bigger and better with a hot new lineup featuring 2 international artists and over 50 local acts – which is sure to be the biggest outdoor event on Durban shores this year.

Fun in the sun 2017 will kick off on Saturday, 30th September 2017 at Hazelmere dam in Durban – a mere 20km off the shoreline of Umhlanga. Gates open at 8am.

The annual Fun in the sun outdoor music festival will feature a lineup headlined by Lost Frequencies (Belgium) and supported by Nora en Pure (Switzerland).

Lost Frequencies
Lost Frequencies

Lost Frequencies, has soared to success in the international music industry. Releasing his global smash hit ‘Are You With Me’ back in 2014 and quickly cementing himself as a name to watch, the track rapidly ascended by hitting multi-platinum status and taking the #1 spot in 18 countries.

Lost Frequencies has brought his unmistakable sound to some of the planet’s biggest clubs and recently headlined his own North American Tour, hosted his own ‘Lost Frequencies & Friends’ at the renowned Amsterdam Dance Event and headlined his own sold-out arena spectacle in Belgium. He has also performed at some of the world’s largest and most notable music festivals, Tomorrowland and Coachella.

Local acts at the event include Chunda Munki, Hippie Mafia, Max Hurrel, Msizi James (5fm), Striptek, Jay Jabbs. Syzo, Hendrik Joerges, Mat od, Huckleberry, Park, Ches, Paul Marks, G Major, Rogue, Murray, Alex M, Dutchman, Beebz, Ryan Stylz, Finn, Zinc, Marc, and many more.

Fun in the sun 2017
Picture credit: https://www.facebook.com/pg/fitsfestival/photos/?ref=page_internal

So, get your camping gear, tent, caravan, sleeping bags, sunscreen and sunnies ready for a full day programme of chilled fun with music, food and lifestyle elements including clothing stalls, a convenience store and more.

Come join us and thousands of fans from across the country and enjoy an unforgettable secure weekend party getaway experience.

Tickets cost R300 for general access and R700 for VIP which will get you onto the VIP deck with a cocktail bar & lounge, free selected drinks from 12pm till midnight and private toilets.

Limited tickets are on sale at www.fitsfest.co.za, at Webtickets or at selected Pick ‘n Pay stores nationwide.

For more information on the event or to book for the available transport visit the Fun in the sun 2017 website.

The event is open to over 18’s and no plastic or glass will be permitted in order to safeguard the environment.

Terms and conditions apply