AfrikaBurn 2023: 24 to 30 April

Sutherland School Fire – Call For Support

In a disastrous turn of events this past week on September 27th, the school in Sutherland was tragically consumed by a fire that has gutted most of the stately heritage building, which is 110 years old. The blaze broke out late on Wednesday night and destroyed seven classrooms, the administration block, staff room and hall.
Options for donations of goods & materials (such as school furniture and kitchenware) are listed below – but if you’re not able to assist with donated items, you could show the school some love by making a donation to the fundraising drive on Quicket:
Click here to support Sutherland School with a donation via Quicket.
Sutherland is renowned as the coldest place in South Africa, and is also home to the National Astronomy Observatory and the Square Kilometre Array radio telescope (SKA), the largest radio astronomy project in the southern hemisphere. It is 60km away from our event site in the Northern Cape Province.
Sutherland School ablaze, Wednesday 27th 2018
The fire leaves 137 learners and their teacher uncertain of the future. Authorities, including the South African Police Service and Northern Cape Education Department are investigating the cause, and once the cause has been determined, we will update this page.
SKOP project crew, and volunteer crew, during San Clan 2015 build in Sutherland Town Square.
It’s in Sutherland that numerous significant large art projects have been built over the last 5 years as part of the SKOP (Sutherland Kuns end Opvoedings Projek / Sutherland Art and Traning Project), including our own San Clan in 2015, and the beautiful SKOP IV seen at this year’s event.
Watercolour illustration by Anthony Koeslag of SKOP IV in progress, Sutherland Town Square, 2018.
These projects have been headed up by Sutherland resident and longstanding AfrikaBurn artist Nathan Victor Honey and members of the Sutherland community, with most builds taking place in the town square. Nathan has offered the use of his workshop sheds as a space for the school to store salvaged items, or be used as storage in the interim.
Project build progress in Sutherland town square, 2017  (photo: Lindsay Cressford)
Through these community-based upskilling initiatives over the years, strong relations have been built with the town’s community, whose unemployed craftsmen have been given opportunities for employment and training (supported by a Grant paid for by your ticket money). 
SKOP IV in Tankwa Town, 2018 (photo by Jonx Pillemer)
In 2015 members of our AfrikaBurn community, including the New Moon Collective, staged performances and a procession to thank the town for its hospitality and support of AfrikaBurn project builds.
New Moon Collective crew stalking the streets, 2015
Over the years these people, and their children who are learners at the school, have become members of our Tankwa Karoo family, which is why our AfrikaBurn team, and community, is stepping up to provide assistance as and where possible.


The school’s Department Head, Mrs Erika Burger, has reached our to our team, with a list of materials and ways to donate to assist the school’s recovery from the fire in the short term, and to begin rebuilding efforts.
The list of items is below and consists of simple yet critical school and catering equipment but would make all the difference to the school as they do their best to recover from the impact of the blaze and continue teaching and resume normal school activities, as well as provide meals to their learners.
These are the critical items required to get the school function again soonest:

Photocopie/printer/fax machine/telephone 1
Computer 1
Laptop 1
Desk 1
Table 1
Chairs 2
Filing cabinet 1
Cabinets (Open shelved, and with doors) 1
Safe 1
School stamps 2
Paper punch (heavy-duty) 1
Heavy duty stapler 1
Stationery 1
Dictionaries (Afrikaans, English) 1
Bible 1
Daily prayer books  
Paper clips, elastic bands  
Files (lever arch, flipfiles)  
Staple remover 1
Letter opener 1
Small waste paper basket 1
Big bin 1
Calculator (non-scientific) 1
Gas heater 1
First Aid Kit 1
Vacuum Cleaner 1

Photocopier / all-in-one printer 1
Computer / PC 1
Tables 2
Chairs 2
Filing cabinets 2
large guillotine 1
Paper punch (strong) 1
Stapler (strong) 1
Laptop 1
Desk 1
Desk chairs 1
Visitor’s chairs 4
Filing cabinet/s 1
Large cabinet with shelving (locakable) 1
Paper punch 1
Stapler (strong) 1
Trash can 1
4 – plate gas hob / burner  
Fridge 1
Freezer 1
Gas stove & ovens 2
Electric stove 1
Sink unit 2
Plastic plates 200
Plastic bowls 200
Plastic cups 200
Large pots 4
Smaller pots 2
Large plastic bowls / containers with lids 4
Smaller round plastic bowls with lids 4
Large plastic trays 4
Plastic 25-litre buckets 2
Plastic 1-litre jugs 2
Large serving spoons 4
Large wooden spoons 2
Wooden boards 4
Chopping board 2
Electric mixer 1
Electric can opener 1
Scale 1
Stainless steel tables for food prep 2
Storage cupboards  
Peelers and chopping knives  
Dishcloths and aprons  
Microwave oven 1
Large kettle for gas stove 1
First aid kit 1
Trash cans  
Large plates 100
Small plates 100
Cups and saucers 50
Glasses 50
Table cloths 30
Metal trestle tables 10
Large tables 2
Chairs 100
Electric frying pans 2
Griddle 1
Small bain marie 1
Microwave 1
Urns 20Lt 2
Kettles 2
Rubbish bins  
Storage cupboards  
Glass jugs 10
Serving platters 2
Muffin pans 2
Containers for coffee, tea, sugar  
Milk jugs  
Sugar bowls  


For those in Cape Town, donations of furniture, goods and materials can be made at a collection point in Kraaifontein:
31 Verdeau Road
Oakwood Estate
(Cordier Rd entrance)
Donations can be dropped off Monday to Friday between 08h00 and 12h30.
To find out about donations at other times, contact Alta De Lange on 083 462 8650


For more info on how you can assist, please contact the school’s head, Mrs Burger on:
Email: [email protected]
Landline: 023 571 2994
WhatsApp: 072 851 6401
The Sutherland business and resident community has set up a channels for direct donations of funds, to the following account:
Sutherland Hoerskool Brandfonds
Account number: 180133497
Account type: Enterprise Autobank PlusPlan
Branch: Beaufort West / 050008
Branch code (electronic payments): 051001
Our hearts go out to all affected by this disastrous blaze – please help us to show our community’s spirit by assisting where you’re able to.

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