Clothes for the needy
By Tabisa Mntengwana
31 July 2012
TO wrap up a busy month in which Buffalo City and the world celebrated International Nelson Mandela Day, Border Community Chest and the metro handed over clothes to needy residents of Duncan Village, near East London.
The event was held at Gompo Community Hall, where more than 200 people gathered to receive the clothing. Speaking about the initiative, Beulah Lumnkwana, the chief executive of the community chest, said: "This initiative is set to help people who don't have warm clothing this winter as temperatures are becoming lower each day."
She added: "We thought it would be a great idea to help them, especially during Mandela Month." The clothes were handed out on Friday, 27 July.
Partnering with Buffalo City and Border Community Chest were local shops, including Woolworths, Jumbo Clothing Store, General Motors, Elvin Juice and the healthcare manufacturer, Johnson and Johnson.
On Nelson Mandela Day, which is observed worldwide on 18 July - Mandela's birthday - everyone is encouraged to give 67 minutes of selfless service in his honour. Mandela turned 94 this year.
According to the Nelson Mandela Day website , the day is set aside to inspire individuals to take action to help change the world for the better, and in doing so, build a global movement for good. "Ultimately it seeks to empower communities everywhere."
Individuals and organisations are encouraged to participate freely and as they wish. "Local businesses also took advantage of Mandela's birthday and gave clothing to the needy in Duncan Village," said Lumnkwana.
She explained that some of those who received the packages had been affected by the shack fires in Duncan Village late last year. "The disaster left over 200 families without homes.
"Partnering with the Buffalo City Metro in this mandate could not have come at a better time. We collect all that we can and keep for the unexpected times like these because our main focus is helping out the needy," she added.
Handing over the goods, Buffalo City Metro Executive Mayor Zukiswa Ncitha said: "Duncan Village is one of the oldest townships in the metro and it is in our priority to get rid of all the shacks and move the people to decent and proper homes."
Mbuyise Sinobolo, one of the beneficiaries, said: "We are grateful today [for the packages] and as well to see that our leaders are making an effort in changing our lives for the better."