IT HAS been a tough year for many South Africans and specifically those living in the drought-stricken and impoverished Eastern Cape, but many showed their mettle on Mandela Day by giving of themselves to their communities for 67 minutes.
Although this year’s celebration commemorates Mandela’s 100th birthday, it appeared that fewer local businesses and organisations participated.
Still, those that did take part did some sterling work in helping the less fortunate members of society with food, clean-ups or other projects.
Ndlambe FM Radio presenters identified 21 vulnerable people to feed at Thornhill.
Project manager and radio presenter Nomzolisi Mgudlandlu said, “We came up with this idea that we should cater [to the] old”.
Radio DJs picked up 21 old people from different families and provided them with lunch on Tuesday. “Our focus was on old people who struggle to walk,” said Mgudlandlu, adding that those were some of the forgotten people in the community. She said that caregivers did not have to worry about lunch on Tuesday as it was already taken care of.
“We did not have any sponsor for this. We contributed out of our own pockets,” Mgudlandlu said.
Station Hill CPF organised a clean-up with
the children of Port Alfred Primêre Skool and collected rubbish from around the school, including the adjacent sports grounds.
A teacher at the school, Louise Bouah, said that this was a way for the children to learn about caring for their community and, at the same time, making Station Hill a cleaner place to live in.
The men at the Sikhulise Skills Development Centre on Pascoe Crescent were determined they would tidy the area around their building.
Armed with shovels and lots of plastic bags, they cleaned up at the Old Market building (The Lounge), the SAPS car park opposite their building, the mosque in the old Telkom building, and the courthouse, as well as on the riverside of the road at the Duck Pond.
Sanral also played its part by planting 10 trees at Kuyasa Combined School on Wednesday afternoon.
In its pamphlet on the event, Sanral wrote: “Trees contribute to their environment by providing oxygen, improving air quality, climate improvement, preserve water, preserving soil and supporting wildlife.”
Talk of the Town also decided as a first part of its Mandela Day pledge, to clean up along the side of the R67 at the block between Becker and Miles Street on Wednesday and managed to fill three bags in no time at all. TotT will once again be at Kelly’s Beach today (Thursday) to pick up rubbish along the beach as well as the much-neglected dune bush all the way to West Beach and invite anyone who would like to join them to be at Kelly’s Beach at 3pm.
WAR ON WASTE: The junior grade pupils at Port Alfred Primêre Skool in Station Hill helped the local CPF in cleaning up the town on Mandela Day. They were ably assisted by a few adults including teachers Louise Bouah and Sphokazi Mpambane, Port Alfred CPF chair George Galbraith, Station Hill CPF chair Joanne Opperman and SAPS officers Sergeant Sindy Pienaar, section commander Constable Romeo Holster and Warrant Officer Denzel Burger
CLEANING YOUR OWN DOORSTEP: With the ongoing roadworks on the R72, a great deal of rubbish has accumulated at the side of the road. Talk of the Town staffers, from left, Bryan Smith, Mauneen Charter and Primrose Magquntulu filled three whole bags of rubbish, collected along the roadside for a single block, on Mandela Day
MEN ON A MISSION: The men who are registered through Sikhulise Skills Development gave back to the community on Mandela Day by cleaning up their area. They are, from left, Toto Makasi, Elvis Siko, Bulelani Donile, Wellington Veto, Ivan Button, Tembekile Holiday, Sandile Gdze, Simon Magadaza, Fezekile Stengile with Sikhulise manager Gertrude Sigonyela and volunteer Lynne Nettelton
OUT-OF-STUDIO SERVICE: Just a day before Mandela’s birthday, Ndlambe FM radio presenters catered to 21 elderly people from Thornhill who cannot walk as part of their 67 minutes. From left are Nkosinathi Poni, Nomzolisi Mgudlandlu, Simthandile Tyam and Titala Ntombozuko