Zip Zap was born from a simple dream, a trapeze bar in a tree in Langa, a box of costumes and a rusty old car. Established in 1992 by South African born Brent van Rensburg and his French wife, Laurence Estève, their dream was to use the circus as a tool to bridge socio-economic gaps and to inspire and empower young people to build a new culture of peaceful co-existence in South Africa, inspired by the late President Nelson Mandela.
‘Time flies when you are having a good time! Celebrating this milestone has brought many memories back and confirmed than we must carry on daring to dream and teach our children to do the same’, says Brent, Co-founder and COO of Zip Zap.
Zip Zap runs 6 Outreach and 4 Youth programmes with children from diverse communities and offer all its programmes free of charge to participants.
Over the years Zip Zap has seen amazing growth. Starting out with 15 children in 1992, now 1 800 children go through our doors each year. A total of 30 000 children have participated in Zip Zap programmes over the past 30 years! The programmes have also increased from 3 in 2001 to 10 in 2022. From a laundry room on the railway to renting various warehouses to a high-tech Dome in Founders Garden on the Foreshore to a custom-designed training and office space in Salt River, Zip Zap has even more exciting plans in the pipeline for the future!
Contributing to the development of young people and the sustainability of the circus arts has seen Zip Zap being recognised in South Africa and the world over.
This 30th anniversary milestone will be celebrated through two events: one for the children from its programmes and the other for alumni, supporters, donors and friends of Zip Zap.
Laurence, Co-founder and CEO of Zip Zap shared the following, ‘We have so many people to thank for this journey of 30 years, from the parents who trusted us with their children, to the sponsors, individuals and government who dared to invest in a circus to change lives. Today, I would like to express my deepest, and most sincere gratitude to all of you.’
Here’s to sharing circus magic with young and old over the next 30 years!