Goldberg (85) still dreams big

2018-05-01 06:00
Denis Goldberg

Denis Goldberg

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Struggle veteran, Denis Goldberg from Hout Bay, celebrated his 85th birthday in style at the Hugo Lambrechts Theatre on Sunday 15 April.

He was honoured with a music concert that attracted over 600 people in an effort to raise funds for his newly established initiative called House of Hope, under the wing of the Denis Goldberg Legacy Foundation, for the disadvantaged communities of Hout Bay. The House of Hope will be built at the Hout Bay Museum site.

“We need R6m for the first phase and ultimately about R20m to provide space for many NGOs working in the field of arts and culture in Hout Bay. The concert raised R200 000 for the project,” Goldberg says.

Various artists including the Tygerberg Children’s Choir, Dizu Plaatjies, Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Mathijs van Dijk, Two Pianists Duo, the Kronendal Music Academy of Hout Bay, students and teachers from Cape Town and Stellenbosch universities, as well as the Folkwang University of the Arts in Germany graced the event.

Guests included Western Cape premier Helen Zille and Western Cape MEC for culture and sport Anroux Marais, national Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom and other prominent individuals.

Goldberg says he wants the House of Hope to empower disadvantaged children living in drug- and alcohol-affected areas. The centre will be a way to keep them busy and off the streets, limiting their exposure to most social ills.

“The centre will give the disadvantaged children of Hout Bay an opportunity to learn to play instruments, identify and develop their talents, and, most importantly, it will give them dignity and hope for the future.

“We are building social cohesion by bringing young people of different ethnic and social backgrounds together. We are working with other NGOs to facilitate weekend and school holiday ‘camps’ while we work at getting our centre built.”

Goldberg says the cause is sponsored by the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Lanxess SA, the South African subsidiary of Lanxess in Germany.

Despite his battle with stage four lung cancer, Goldberg is determined to see his initiative succeed. He says specialists have granted him “borrowed time” to achieve his dream of attending the opening of the centre. Goldberg was accused number 3 during the Rivonia Trial at the Palace of Justice in Pretoria in 1963 after a raid on Liliesleaf Farm. He was found guilty on charges including conspiracy and sabotage and was sentenced to life imprisonment, but was released in 1985.

He and fellow veteran, Andrew Mlangeni, are the only remaining Rivonia trialists.


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