Wife & son horsing around

23 September

Shelley  continues to make good progress.  The sedation has been completely off for the last few days and assisted by the ventilator machine she is breathing well. Most of the time she is comfortable and peaceful. 

She sleeps a great deal of the time, but quite frequently there are periods where the non verbal communication is rich and full of meaning. Facial expressions and movements communicate happiness, peacefulness, discomfort, frustration, agreement and humour.

Of course the road ahead is is still long. Of course there is still the possibility of danger and challenge. But as of now Shelley’s steely will, excellent medicine, the avalanche of prayer and God’s power are working in harmony to heal her. All of these continue to be needed.

To protect her from the risk of new infections visiting is still tightly restricted.

We have a great deal for which to be grateful 



September 17

Shelley is starting to show encouraging signs that the the infection has been controlled and her system is stable. She is still on life support for all of her needs. The level of sedation is being reduced slowly. Medically these are still small steps, but emotionally the change is huge as she can move her head a little and respond a bit by nodding. 

There is still a long journey ahead that is not without its dangers and challenges, but the direction is positive. We are grateful.


September 13

A tracheotomy was performed late yesterday afternoon and it proceeded without complications.

This morning physician has told us that her condition is much more positive. Still a long journey ahead, but today the news is very encouraging.

I am very thankful 



Update on Shelley’s health - September 9

Dear friends

I know that many of you are anxious to get an update on Shelley’s health. The last update was on Sunday which was a very encouraging day. Since then Shell’s condition has got weaker. She remains on full life support, is fully sedated and her condition is critical. 

The care she is receiving is superb. I cannot think of any better place to be or a better team of people to be caring for her. I am so very very grateful for this. 

The family is tightly bonded together as we support each other through this period. Loving friends are providing all the practical support that is needed. We lack for nothing.

I am sure you will realise that the family and Lally are totally focused on loving and caring for Shelley, keeping the immediate far flung family updated and caring for each other. Please excuse us if at this time we do not communicate with all of Shelley’s loving friends and colleagues as much as we would like to.

Love to you all



September 5

It has been a week of ups and downs, but the ups create hope and the downs create patience ! 

There was a secondary infection or worry of one which has not turned out to be an issue thankfully. 

They have lifted the sedation twice to see if mums system would cope. The first time was not very successful so they sedated her again quite quickly. The second time was much better and mom coped really well. 

We have seen mom deliberately move her head and eyes in response to us talking to her which has been hugely exciting ! 

We are conscious of and are reminded by the amazing nurses that mom is by no means out of the woods. The small improvements are however there! 

The greatest need is for healing in her lungs as there has been significant damage. 

Currently mom is calm, stable and being prayed for in most corners of the world. 

Thank you so much for all the messages, meals and prayers. 

Grant Godsell


September 1st 2016

Dear Friends

I wish i could report positive progress on Shelley’s health. However the situation remains very serious. What is positive for me is :

1 She is receiving the very best and amazingly loving medical care. I could not wish for anything better.

2 She is stable and comfortable.

3 There seems to be an avalanche of love and prayers from around the world.

4 And finally I strongly believe that she feels God’s constant and loving presence.

Please do not to cease to pray for Shelley




August 28th 2016

Dear e’Pap Children’s Feeding Project Supporter

It is my sad duty to advise you that Shelley is seriously ill and will not be able to be able to lead the e’Pap Children’s Project for the next few months. 

Nearly two weeks ago she contracted a particularly aggressive strain of pneumonia and has been kept alive by machines for the last 11 days. There is no communication at the moment.  I am told that she is stable but still very vulnerable and I have been advised to prepare for a very long journey. I don’t know what that really means, other than it is likely to be some months before Shelley can reassume the leadership of our project.  We had an e’Pap management committee meeting on Thursday and wherever possible activities normally handled by Shelley have been taken over by one of the other committee members.  There are a couple of activities, such as starting new schools and new volunteers, which will simply be postponed until next year.

We are confident that the feeding  of the many thousands of children through our 90 odd schools in the Garden Route Area will continue with the same efficiency and care that has always been the hallmark of our project. Our committee is fully committed to ensuring that our project will be a strong as ever when Shelley returns  to take up the lead again in January next year.

Updates on the status of Shelley’s health,  will be posted to the website - see the link at the end of this note.  Things are moving very slowly so updates are unlikely to be more frequent than weekly. I will however update when there is a significant  change.

I have two requests to volunteers and supporters:

Firstly, as Shelley is very vulnerable to any germs at the moment, the hospital has limited visiting to the immediate family and Lally only. So please do not visit her until I have advised you that the situation has improved.

Secondly, I am sure you will understand that  Lally and I, in particular, are battling to cope with that many calls from concerned supporters and volunteers as well as handling the normal queries that are involved in our project. We need to spread the load of providing communications. It would be helpful if you could be guided by the following guidelines: 

1 For general project queries, volunteers should contact their area representatives.

2 For queries that relate to bursaries for teacher training in 2017, please contact Lesle Odendaal  0732245886  dmod@telkomsa.net

3 For information relating to end of year meeting - Nicky Rutherford 044 384 0766, larkrise@seanet.co.za

4 For other issues please send me an email peter.godsell@mweb.co.za and i will ensure that the query is routed to the most appropriate person.

Finally let me end by saying that my focus is to do everything possible to help Shell to recover and then be able to have time to be a mother, grandmother, sister, wife and friend.

Best regards


The Essence of our Project