City gives ‘helping feet’ to old

2015-12-01 06:00
Fred May (86) and mayor Patricia de Lille at Oakhaven Place in Heideveld where the City of Cape Town handed over 50 commodes and 15 sets of crutches to seniors. PHOTO: Earl haupt

Fred May (86) and mayor Patricia de Lille at Oakhaven Place in Heideveld where the City of Cape Town handed over 50 commodes and 15 sets of crutches to seniors. PHOTO: Earl haupt

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Choruses of the Christian hymn “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” resonated through the streets of Heideveld last Wednesday as Fred May (86), resident of Oakhaven Place, played his saxophone, leaving mayor Patricia de Lille in awe.

Each year the mayor’s office provides councillors with a number of wheelchairs, walkers, crutches and commodes to donate to residents in need. This year it was the turn of Oakhaven Place to be the primary beneficiary of 50 commodes and 15 sets of crutches.

Pieter Beets, operations manger at the Cape Peninsula Organisation for the Aged (CPOA), and the residents of Oakhaven Place thanked the City for its contribution.

De Lille addressed the residents and thanked the senior citizens for the beautiful City that they built and for bringing the next generation into the world to continue with the work they have done.

“I believe senior citizens should grow old with dignity and not be left in a state of abuse and when nobody cares for them, so as the City we have to show you that we care,” said De Lille.

Cynthia Fredricks (73) from Mitchell’s Plain is one of the newest residents of the home.

“When everybody heard [De Lille] was coming, we were very excited. [Having] the mayor come to Oakhaven was a dream come true. I am certain this gave the home a boost,” Fredericks said.

Emanuel de Villiers (74) from Silvertown has been at the haven for three years and loves reading in the library.

“During the past few weeks, we have been getting so many things that it has not struck me until later that we as a haven are so blessed to have received these gifts from the City,” said De Villiers.

De Lille reiterated that the haven is one of the City’s ongoing home-based care programmes in poor communities in Cape Town.

“In the past financial year, 5000 seniors in areas, including Masiphumelele, Athlone, Manenberg, Bonteheuwel and Philippi, have received these services,” stated De Lille.

She went on to say that the City would be raising further awareness about the challenges families faced and how they could overcome these challenges as a unit through the City’s programmes.

“I urge all senior citizens to make contact with the City’s social development department if they would like to enquire about or access these programmes and services.”

Caroline Adriaans, (87) from Lotus River has been at the haven for more than three years.

“We thank the mayor for giving us the equipment.”

Susan Alexander (80) from Mitchell’s Plain has been a resident at the home for little over a year and is a self-professed jack of all trades serving the city with her knowledge.

“It was really a beautiful gesture of the mayor of Cape Town for thinking of us seniors, as we need this equipment as not everybody is fortunate enough to buy their own equipment. I would like to thank the mayor for choosing us,” Alexander said.

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