To someone I still hold dear in my life, to: Raylene Williams, maiden surname (Van Wyk- Roux) Raylene a friend in a million Well if I start from the beginning which is about 26 years ago, I think I will end up writing a book. So I am going to try to be somehow short sweet and to the point, That is the most Raylene can expect from me(Adele-ex-best friend), anyway I met Raylene when I was eighteen and she only thirteen, by then I didn’t have friends But Raylene being one friend that made up for all the friends I didn’t have and also didn’t worry about having. She was one positive live wire in me, meaning that no matter what you were going through or what you had or didn’t have she always made you feel like you were the only person in the world, she made you feel good when you felt bad about being fat, ugly or you were down in some dump, Yes Miss Roux knew exactly how to pick up your spirits, One thing we promised each other when we just met was, never steal each other’s boyfriends, never ever lie to each other and no matter what always be true to each other. I am guilty of one of them I didn’t stay true to my friend, I let her down. But today I can truly say that I am so thrilled that I could have this opportunity to make up for the lost time. All I can say is Raylene you are a champion in many of our lives today. Keep up the positivity you instilled in me and others and Walk with faith as you always have.
With a smile I can say whatever you touch I know that it would turn to gold, So here’s to you Ray!Name: Adele Changelryen (SOUTH AFRICA)
Raylene, a single mother of two beautiful kids (Joshua and Skye) is beautiful inside and out. She is intelligent, have a sense of humour, goal oriented, decision maker, loving, a leader, advisor, counsellor, teacher, motivator with a very big heart to serve and help others. When Ray sets her mind on doing something, no one will stop her or distract her until it is complete with a positive outcome. Ray has worked hard to put together a project which seeks to help empower women and children and is offering herself in Eldorado Park and Alberton South Africa, to assist children with Art Classes.
I met my sister Ray at Edenvale. Her strong but warm nature made her my pillar of strength as I learned we could talk about anything and everything. She always had the right words and advice to pull me up and look forward to tomorrow. We were both renting cottages on the same property in Edenvale. She was welcoming when I first arrived, and did not hesitate to offer help where needed. Every day I came home from work, she offered her good home cooked meals to me time and again. Ray is such a giver. I met her at a time though, where she was going through her trials and tribulations, from family to raising her children into future respectable beings who would be known and respected by South Africa and the world (which she is doing a great job at). I could relate to her challenges though as I was going through my own challenges. Her love for God made us one as she matched who I am, God fearing. We both had appointments that had to be kept, she, having a passion for helping and empowering women and children and I, to serve in ministry.
Through lives challenges, she has fought to live and held on to a dream which has unfolded up to this far, South Africa and the world is about to see it. She stood the test, has been broken but never gave up. Ray is a mirror of the women and children she wants to help and serve, and will surely touch hearts and make a difference in the community.
“MY FRIEND, I LOVE YOU FOR SO MANY REASONS. YOU BROUGHT A SMILE TO MY FACE AND MANY ARE WAITING TO RECEIVE THAT VERY SAME SMILE. NOW GO OUT THERE AND GIVE HOPE TO THE BROKEN AND HELP FOR THOSE IN NEED. YOU HAVE WALKED THIS FAR, AND SUCH AN ICON. KEEP WALKING MY SIS.
YOU ARE TRULY BLESSED”
My Sister, My Friend
KHOLI NKUMANE GELUKSDAL, SOUTH AFRICA
Ray is a straight forward person and also very caring, very strong independent single mum and takes pride in whatever she does. After she lost her home, her vehicle, she still managed to dust herself off and walk with her head up high.
Valecia Johnson (Florida South Africa)
My sister Raylene Williams, she means the world to me, no words can explain the worth that she bears. Always ready to help others, and not taking them for granted. Always willing to listen to others problems and not taking her own into consideration. From my own personal experiences, she has always been there for me no matter what the circumstances were. She's a very hard working woman. If she has her mind set on something, she's a total go getter if u ask me. She loves kids and she strongly believes in family values.
As younger siblings growing up, we didn't have the best of things that life had to offer. I felt I was always in competitions with cousins and other family members who had the best of things including both their parents and not a broken home. Well, on the other hand we had both our parents there but it felt as though they were only there for themselves. As the older sister and brother we had to take some what matters into our own hands. As for my eldest sister she was the one that actually looked after me, always there for me when I needed her, always helping me with the utmost of complicated issues. For what it’s worth, I looked up to her and still do to this very day. Knowing that she was the one I could really count on if needed be.
We didn't have much of roll models or people we could look up too except our late grandmother, her late daughter and her late son an Evangelist, who all passed away when we were young, but me knowing my sister was around gave me some sense of security, some sense of wellbeing. She gave me strength when I couldn't bear the clutches that life threw at us. She inspired me to look at things from a broader perspective. Without her been there for me I wouldn't have been here today. I would have either been in jail or six foot under. For some reason, we totally understand each other. We understand that family did come first, considering how brothers and sisters can treat each other in today’s world. To be totally honest, with all that has happened to her, she will still have the strength to be there for others including me. All I can say is, thank GOD that He gave me a sister like her, for every cloud, there is always a silver lining, and that silver lining in my life is her. Thank you sis!
Leroy Van Wyk (Florida, South Africa)
As an aunt of Raylene I saw this beautiful little girl grow into a young lady with so much to give of herself to family and friends. Ray grew up in a very Spiritual environment throughout her life...She’s a beautiful young lady with so much ambition dare to live for her purpose and goals that God has bestow over her life and that's from a very young age, not to barely exit but to truly live the life God had Laid out uniquely for her. Yet as she grew into this very intelligent young lady, Ray came across her soul mate, got married and had two beautiful children out of their marriage!! Sadly things did not work out as planned.
Ray stayed motivated through all her trails and tribulations fighting to fulfil her passion and dream in order to make her children proud of their mom and still had a reason and purpose to fight...unfailing
Ray was never too lazy or found it difficult to pick up her phone to call or message her family to see how we’re all doing, there were times her cuz would call me to ask if Raylene was ok, is someone going to die, because he found it strange that Ray had all the time in the world to chat properly at odd times. That’s how she kept us on our toes, Ray's calls, sharing her refreshed and innovative visions for her life and others out there. As a single Mom, she has invested over the past few years trying to build the necessary infrastructure to ensure whatever task is awarded to her is to forge a reputation build on integrity and professionalism.
May Raylene by the Grace of God reach her full potential to empower the less privileged in particular the Women and Children who are challenged in today's Society especially the Drug Abuse in our Homes. We need to empower young ladies like Raylene to make the difference amongst our youths. I, her Aunty Lorna, who was married to her mom’s late brother, would love to see her recognized for her fullest potential and input striving to be creative and innovative in her entire endeavours for our Community.
If there's any other questions concerning please do not hesitate to contact me on +2773 512 5659
May God Richly Bless her wishes.
May they all become a reality for your purpose God has set out for u... you very dear to me Ray.
You’re Aunt Lorna Van Wyk (South Africa)
I’ve know Ray since she was just a little girl when I landed my first job after completing school as their domestic worker. Not having any work experience, I was very honoured to have found work for two loving sisters living together, that being Ray’s grandmother, her grandmother’s sister with her children, and a few orphans as well as Ray & her siblings. Needless to say, the house was big and filled with people. I remember all the grandchildren coming there after school as well while their parents were at work. I became part of the family, and even though this was back in the eighties, our apartheid times, and her family did not discriminate me against my skin colour. Her grandmother and her aunt paid a very keen interest in me as a person and even the time my mom was ill, her family called on a regular basis to check up on us all.
I remember her grandmother believing that family should always be there for each other and the love she had in her to take in orphans really touched my heart. She would guide me like a mother would guide her daughter. I saw for the first time how a table should be laid with knives, forks, side plates and the works every day. That is the type of upbringing Ray comes from, everything should be in order and there were always rules to follow. I remember Ray being a tiny little Egyptian looking girl with long black hair and golden skin. She was a very kind child showing a lot of respect for everyone and I noticed that she was the most favoured child out of the lot.
After her aunt moved out, I moved with her as she was the one who employed me. I kept in contact with her family over the years even after she lost her aunt and her grandmother but I lost contact with her because she was just a little girl then. I took what I learned from her grandmother and her aunt and pursued my own career where I travelled to England as an au pair, I worked as a matron at an all-girls school and I am a professional runner in support of charities like Ghandi Walk, etc. When I bumped into her again over thirty years later when passing their house and found that she was still there. I asked if she remembered me but she couldn’t, instead she warmly smiled and welcomed me in for a cup of coffee and something to eat. After I told her my name, she remembered who I was.
I see Ray every day now because our kids attend the same school and we are still family. She displays her grandmother’s love for people of all races and the need to helping children. I’ve seen her work in the community. It’s like she inherited all this from her granny who use to look after orphans. She shows passion when it comes to the children she teaches or when she’s merely giving advice, encouragement and support. Being much older and wiser and a ton of experience behind her both in her professional and personal life, I believe she can help abundant women, children and broken families and she will get very far.
I fully support her and have offered to be a volunteer whenever she needs an extra pair of hands. I know her family, her upbringing and her background, that is why I know she is capable to work with the community at large.
Molly Sow (Pimville Soweto, South Africa, +2772 1508530)
To Whom It May Concern
I Neil Baynes, have known Raylene since we were kids living just a house away from each other.
Ever since then I‘ve always known Raylene to always care about others and their well-being.
During our school days, both Primary and Secondary .. I recall her being above average if not the smartest student in our grade. I was one of the many students that she would tutor maths, science and other sujects too, after school.
She was often part of something bigger and always spoke about giving back to others unconditionally .
As kids, we had made a promise to each other to always be there for one another even if married and old. Well.. most people I know would grow out of their childhood promise. But! Raylene stayed true to who she is and supported me emotionally when i needed it most a few years ago. Those are just one of the many traits that she has. Having them is one thing..but making it part of your life to better others and their lives is something that Raylene has mastered.
I‘ve had the privilege to have stayed in touch with her over the years, and always noticed her ability to give and give without expecting anything in return. Hearing that she has gone again and embarked on a project of this nature is nothing short of being Raylene.
Regards Neil Baynes (Photo Journalist, firstname.lastname@example.org) Germany
It was on the 19th January 1976, that was one of the most proudest moments of my life. This was the day that my first child was born. It was from the onset that I knew that this child was destined for great achievements.
Raylene did not prove me wrong from the time she attended nursery school throughout her schooling, she was always amongst the top students. Her academic achievements and awards she received only made me a very proud father. It was during this period of her life that she portrayed great leadership and independent qualities. She was the talk amongst my family, everyone always wanted to know what her next award would be.
From an early age she showed me that she had a great interest in art and literature, she would often be found sketching or writing poems. Many times she would say to me that was her calling in life but unfortunately she could not pursue her dreams due to family circumstances and having her own family. There were setbacks in her marriage and her career and during these setbacks, she would still hold onto her dreams even when her career took her in a completely different direction.
When times got rough, Ray would find refuge in her drawings or writing poetry. When there were some form of tragic within the family, Raylene would present a drawing or a poem to sooth the heart-ache. This was the type of person she is and will always be. It is quite noticeable that she is instilling these skills and qualities in her two children and from what’s being presented especially from her son, it is quite evident that he has inherited his mother’s ability to draw.
Now that the opportunity has presented itself for Ray to pursue her dreams, I can only watch in awe at her determination in wanting to make a success of this opportunity. As her father, I know that Raylene will make great inroads in the arts and literature culture. I know that she will build a reputation and a legacy that will last forever.
So it is with this testimonial that I wish my daughter everything of the best, let God guide her every step of the way to great success. This is a very proud father filled with pride that I have a daughter such as Raylene
(Tulisa Park, South Africa)
To whom it may concern.
Date: 08 June 2014
Testimonial for Raylene Williams
I have known Raylene since grade 3 which is more than 27 plus years.
She has so many excellent qualities. She truly is a great listener and is willing to offer honest advice if needed. She is a lot of fun to be around and is easy-going. She is a very caring person and is genuinely interested in what is happening in your life. I feel a strong connection even though we live far apart. It is always easy to reconnect when we see or talk to each other. I value her friendship and know that she would be there for me or any person in need any time. Honesty and sincerity are two of Raylene's assets. Her strengths are her patience and listening skills paired with her sense of humor and a touch of class. She will join you for a hearty laugh and shed a tear with you any time of day. Her word is good, no exception.
I trust that she will excel in anything she pursues.
Zayda Swartz (South Africa)