Category Archives: SA Community

A New Dawn For The SAVA?

With the SAVA under new management, some in the local and global VC are waiting eagerly, perhaps skeptically, to see what the future holds for the SAVC and what the newly appointed Regent has up his sleeve. Perhaps the biggest question on everyone’s mind is “will he be able to fill the shoes, or smoke the pipe?”. In order to answer this question, first we must take a look at exactly where these shoes are standing and what that pipe is stuffed with. We begin with the SAVA.

A reminder of what exactly the SAVA is.

Founded in 2011, the SAVA exists to serve as a representative council for the SAVC with a “lead by example” attitude. It’s sole purpose is to give structure to the community and to encourage the growth and participation of groups in the local and global VC, and to make the SAVC a safe environment for all participants, in and outside of the SAVA. The SAVA is a secular group bound by no specific religious practice or political views. The SAVA follows a set of laws laid out in what is called the “Totem Lex Vampirica”, the fundamental guide to the way of the SAVA and its members.

The SAVA promotes equality to all vampi(y)res regardless of feeding methods and encourages the community to learn from each other and respect diversity rather than seek superiority over others because of different beliefs and practices. The ruling council of the SAVA known as the Executive Committee, consists of all the experienced leaders within the SAVA and they oversee the general operation of the organization. At the head of the Executive Committee, is the Regency which consists of the Regent himself and his two Praetors, along with the Regency Secretary. The Regency oversees all decision making within, and actions to be taken by, the Executive Committee.

By looking at all of the above information, it’s clear that the SAVA is no small-time organization and whoever sits at the head of it will need to possess a clear and resolute mind at all times and be someone capable of leading with wisdom and insight. Which now brings us to the new Regent…

Who is Draygon Allesandro Sheppard?

Draygon Allesandro Sheppard, known to most as Dray, is the Primus and Founder of House Dova Sanguine. Dova Sanguine started as a small Coven of hybrid vampi(y)res back in July, 2012. With the help of his co-founder, Raynia Elizabeth Sparta, the Coven grew to House status by early 2017. Before stumbling upon the SAVA, Draygon had already built a database for Dova Sanguine containing all kinds of guidelines; procedures; laws and other information he had gathered since his awakening which occurred at the young age of twelve. His knowledge of different feeding methods and ritual practices were set out in various documents made available to new members of his House.

As any young vampi(y)re would be, Draygon was afraid of reaching out in an attempt to find others of his kind and was only able to come into contact with other lone vampi(y)res, and obviously ones who claimed to be but never truly were. Draygon started to study different cultures; religions; mythologies and folklore for traces of vampirism in an attempt to find other individuals or perhaps organizations who he could communicate with and learn from. The breakthrough came right under his nose when a fellow Coven member stumbled upon the SAVA website in an attempt to get some inspiration for a Coven glyph. Draygon took the leap and contacted the SAVA, never expecting how things would turn out in the future. Draygon was contacted by Octarine Valur herself and through her, Draygon found what he was searching for all those years.

Draygon saw Octarine as his mentor. She guided him; gave him advice; taught him about the SAVA and the local vampi(y)re community and opened doors to a world of knowledge he never even thought existed. With the knowledge Octarine gave him, he continued to improve and grow House Dova Sanguine and became more visible in the online community. Draygon taught his fellow House members how to learn from others and how to pass their knowledge to others. He taught them how to learn from each other and how to respect one another’s beliefs and preferences. He inspired equality and understanding in his House while enforcing strict laws and disciplinary procedures for those who overstepped any boundaries.

In the end…

It will be no easy task, but if Draygon Allesandro Sheppard is able to lead the SAVA with the same compassion and authority he leads his House, he may be able to unite the SAVC and carry forth the vision of the SAVA and maybe even inspire other communities all over the world. It is an honorable position, and a big pair of shoes to fill and even though so many may wonder why, perhaps Octarine’s decision to pass the torch was a carefully calculated move and trust well placed. Only time will tell.


An open letter to the South African Vampyre Community – by Octarine Valur

I am Octarine Valur. You may have heard of me, you may have heard a few interesting things about me. Some of them may even be true. I’m called the founder of South Africa’s VC. I’m called ‘Regent’ of the SA Vampyre Alliance. Some have called me ‘despot’ and some have even mocked me by calling me ‘Queen’. You may wonder which of these things is true, and you may be wondering what the SAVA is about.

Despot? Queen? No. I am neither of those things. Anyone who knows vamps, knows that getting a group of us to face in the same direction at the same time is like herding cats. Not all of us would agree about anything at the same time or in the same way, and neither would all of us get along or see eye to eye. A strong leader gets things done, a passionate leader holds on until it is.

I am Regent of the SAVA, yes. I founded the SAVA, yes – after spending several years in search of the elusive South African Vampyre Community online, and of finding nothing more than a handful of solitaries interested in becoming something more, something bigger, and more real and significant. An actual community. A family.

That’s what the SAVA is about – making the community around it into a family. The SAVA is an organization started in May 2011, and its purpose was to build the SA VC, beyond the isolated little FB groups and offline solitary vamps scattered across South Africa – to create a thriving network of real-life Vampyre covens, courts and social groups. To some degree, SAVA has succeeded.

Today we have at least one House in our community, House Valur and its two covens, d’Eir and Veritas – and the SAVA and its various projects are our legacy. Today, thanks to the efforts of the SAVA, vampyric Pagans can participate openly in Pagan groups and within the Pagan community with understanding and without fear of prejudice. Thanks to the SAVA, the SA VC has a face and a voice. Despite the criticism brought against us over the years, our critics have never delivered anything worthy of compare to the SAVA.

This is to let you know – the Awakened of South Africa – we are here. We’re here for you, and we’re not going anywhere. Take our hand – join us in making the SA VC better!

Shadow Senate Confirms – Group Affiliations Are Back!

SAVA GlyphAt the most recent meeting of the Shadow Senate held on February 4, 2015 it was decided that the previous ruling which prevented Covens and Houses from affiliating with the SAVA was stifling the growth of the local VC; in that participants no longer saw the need to form groups of their own to service the needs of their own areas.

This ruling, made in 2012, was effectively overturned. Continue reading

SAVA National Gathering & Awards Ceremony 2014

On November 1, the SAVA held its first National Gathering, generously hosted by Coven d’Eir in Durban. The venue was the Winston Pub, and aside from the members of Coven d’Eir, some of the other local VC participants also attended, as well as some of the local Gothic society, as well as some interesting seekers who had been keeping up with the local VC wanting to make contact with us for some time.

20141101 Gathering of the Damned

Continue reading

For The SA VC: A Brief Description Of Real Life Vampyre Groups – & Why We Need Them – by Octarine Valur

What is a ‘house’ in Vampyre culture? And what is a ‘coven’?

In South Africa, there have been several groups known as Houses. House Valur is perhaps the most well known here, followed by House of Havoc, and there is also Coven d’Eir.  While some have contributed immensely to the growth of the culture in their own ways, numerous others have surfaced in our community over the years, but it seems took a deep breath, and then sank below the surface never to be heard from again. What are these groups and why do we need groups like them? Continue reading

Happy Heritage Day! – A Message From The SAVA

Today is Heritage Day in South Africa, and for many of us it is a public holiday, a time to relax, and to enjoy with friends and family. Some call it “braai day”, but considering the wet weather we are having in some places today, that seems somewhat unlikely. However, everywhere there are people celebrating their heritage openly, and even publicly, whether in large groups, or small. Whether they are celebrating their ethnicity, their religious affiliations, their language, their sexual orientations or even their gender – or permutations of the above, most people will be celebrating their personal identities. But what about participants in the Vampyre subculture? Continue reading

FOSAV Removed From Facebook – SAVA “Undeterred”

Hi Res Narrow***Statement By SAVA IRO Removal Of FOSAV Group On Facebook***

At 2:17pm South African time today, the Facebook group “Friends of the South African Vampire” was removed by Facebook. According to the message from Facebook, this was because “it violated our Terms of Use. Among other things, groups that are hateful, threatening, or obscene are not allowed. We also take down groups that attack an individual or group, or advertise a product or service.” Continue reading