Awards & Testimonials


  • 2017 Laurence Estève, President of the jury of the FESTIVAL MONDIAL DU CIRQUE DE DEMAIN - Paris FRANCE
  • 2016/17 "National and International Contribution in Arts and Culture, Language, Heritage, Geographical Names, Museums, Libraries or Archive", Western Cape Government Cultural Affairs and Sport - CULTURAL AFFAIRS AWARDS 2016/17
  • 2016 Brent and Laurence awarded the Paul Harris Fellow from the Rotary Club of Cape Town
  • 2014 Zip Zap Khayelitsha Outreach division finalist for the Beyond Sports Award in the Sports for Health award
  • 2013 Pan-African award winner for Entrepreneurship in Education
  • 2012 Knight of the National Order of Merit – Laurence Estève from French government
  • 2012 PGWC – Brent van Rensburg for the promotion of the performing arts
  • 2011 Mayor’s Medal – Brent van Rensburg to Youth Affairs
  • 2009 China Wuqiao International Circus Festival – Joka Boys
  • 2008 Cape Talk Nedbank small business finalist
  • 2008 Men’s Health – Brent van Rensburg winner of “Best Man of the Year in Public Services”
  • 2007 Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain – Nikouline Russian clown award to Joka boys
  • 2007 Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain – Kagisho Mutlane swinging trapeze
  • 2006 Sappi – “Ideas That Matter” winner
  • 2005 Proudly South African – “Bridge Building of the Year” finalist
  • 2003 Latina circus festival, Italy – Kagisho Mutlane winner of best presentation
  • 2002 Monte Carlo circus festival – Silijo winner of SACEM prize
  • 2002 Veo Veo International Festival, Spain – Holly & Becky Megaw 5th place with scarf
  • 2001 Business Day Award – winner in Arts Education
  • 2001 Cirque Malter, Belgium – Simon, Lionel, Jose, Wandi
  • 2001 Circafrica, France – Simon, Lionel, Jose, Wandi


"In 2011, along with 30 Saltimbanco artists and employees, I had the privilege of visiting Zip Zap. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to experience firsthand the contagious joy, enthusiasm and hope shared by all those who come in contact with Zip Zap programs.

I am proud of the ten-year social circus partnership shared by Zip Zap and Cirque du Soleil. During those years, Cirque du Soleil had the wonderful opportunity to support the astonishing hard work accomplished by Zip Zap in the fight against HIV by empowering young people affected and giving them the chance to express themselves through social circus. Our work together is based on the common desire to give South African youth the tools to build a better tomorrow.

We at Cirque du Soleil salute Zip Zap’s remarkable social involvement and commitment to its community. Zip Zap is the living proof that actions speak louder than words and that sky is the limit when we all come together! May your activities continue to inspire!"

- Daniel Lamarre, President and CEO of Cirque du Soleil

"I salute your vision and tenacity over the years. You believe in your dream and have overcome so many obstacles. You have continued where so many others would have thrown in the towel. Your new home is so impressive, but what you are doing for young people and for Cape Town and South Africa is what really knocks me out. Take a bow, you deserve a long and standing ovation."

- David Kramer, Singer, Songwriter, Playwright and Director, Spectator of “Once Upon A Circus”

"We were blown away with the effort and skill of the youngsters!"

-Jacques Maritz, Media Spokesperson, Office of the Deputy Mayor of the City of Cape Town

"I think what is being built will endure longer than just the next 16 years. They have created a wonderful legacy."

-Ian Watt, former Managing Director of Old Mutual Properties

“The Zip Zap Circus School is an amazing project that takes young children off the street, affords them the opportunity to develop skills and most importantly, provides them with a sense of purpose and hope for the future. This championing of children is critical to our ability to build a strong, productive, and united society. When I recently had the opportunity to meet some of the Zip Zap Circus School ’s young stars, I was immediately struck by their enthusiasm and excitement at being involved in what is a truly remarkable social enterprise that has a special role to play in the economy and community of our province.”

- Alan Winde, Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism of the Western Cape Government

"We wanted to organize something different from standard company functions…Nothing better than supporting a beautiful initiative like the Zip Zap and offering at the same time a pure moment of joy for our employees, clients, friends and their families! THANK YOU VERY MUCH TO ALL THE ZIP ZAP TEAM!!!!

- Benoît Buron, AMT SA (Pty) Ltd


What Zip Zap Kids Have Said

“Zip Zap not only teaches us circus skills, it also teaches us self-respect and how to respect other people."

“Zip Zap for me personally is a home and Zip Zap has made a change in me. Therefore, through Zip Zap I believe I can also make a change to the next generation. And all the youngsters that are at Zip Zap, to me they are my brothers and sisters, that’s why Zip Zap is a home for me.”

“Zip Zap helped me a lot with not being afraid, it helped with my shyness. It has given me a dream to live for, a purpose for the future. It has given me friends and a bigger family.”

“Zip Zap has done a lot for me according to where I come from, and all the difficulties in life. I’m very proud that I’m in Zip Zap.”

>> The words of the artists dare to dream program