Helping Hand Foundation help elderly walk for health

2016-12-21 06:01
The elderly walk for health.                            Photo: NCEBA DLADLA

The elderly walk for health. Photo: NCEBA DLADLA

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MOTHERWELL elderly citizens walked for about 5km during a Walk for Health organised by members of the Helping Hand Foundation, a Non Profit-making Organisation (NPO), in NU 1 Motherwell recently.

The Walk for Health was part of a campaign aimed at helping senior citizens to address health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart-problems and stress, said the foundation founder member and chairperson, Zuko Mahlulo. Mahlulo is a jikeleza taxi operator.

Members of the emergency services unit, including traffic police officials, were on hand to ensure that the elderly walked peacefully and safely.

According to Mahlulo, the NPO was founded almost three years ago and was officially registered with the Department of Social Development this year.

They started by collecting and donating clothing for the needy. Soon, they saw a need to address societal problems associated with unemployment, abject poverty, stress and conflict, among others.

“We were starting to see the NPO’s relevance and the need in our community which includes all the Voting Districts of Ward 56 in Motherwell,” said Mahlulo.

Despite have little themselves, he and his friends took money from their own pockets to buy vegetables and start a soup kitchen.

“It became clear that life’s difficulties were not confined to unemployment and inequality. There are also the problems of elderly abuse, sometimes by their children and/or grandchildren.

“Domestic violence was too much of a problem to deal with on our own. These problems cannot be solved by a plate of hot soup and bread.”

They then decided to develop working relations and partnerships with institutions like FAMSA, SAPS, Departments of Education, Health and SAPS.

“We invite specialists to come and address members. We have both elderly and middle-aged citizens who find our meetings very fruitful,” said Mahlulo.

The men meet on Tuesdays while the women meet on Wednesdays.

Mahlulo thanked his partners Zola Ganya, Azola Bangiso, Nomsa Tom, Sanelisiswe Neku, Macy Tom, Siphokazi Somka and Mam’uFazana Tini for their dedication and love for their work.

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