Home barely survives

2019-07-23 06:25
The Kensington Home for the Aged. PHOTOS: THABANG KUAHO

The Kensington Home for the Aged. PHOTOS: THABANG KUAHO

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The Kensington Home for the Aged has recently taken to social media to ask residents to donate radios for its blind and partially blind residents.

These residents often got bored when sitting in the TV room with other senior citizens who are able to follow what is happening on the screen.

Upon People’s Post’s enquiry on how the drive was doing, manager of the facility Leon Courie said he was overwhelmed by the response from the community.

He further said that while the radios keep a lot of the elders occupied, not everything is sunshine and roses at the home.

Courie said that he has been trying to get off the City of Cape Town power grid due to the high electricity bills they have to pay.

“As things stand, we pay about R35 000 a month for electricity and the bill just keeps increasing,” Courie said.

He further said that although the home is government subsidised, there are other costs that still need to be paid; which makes it difficult to properly maintain it.

“The whole idea is to get off the City’s grid so that we can start saving up for additional solar heating panels and we can completely get off the grid.”

He said there currently are solar heating panels installed at the facility and that assists with the reduction of electricity costs.

Courie pleaded with the community and businesses to help donate supplies because they soon run out.

“Some of the sick elders use nappies and those run out very fast. Toiletries and food are also an important need.”

He mentioned that, if their application to get off the City’s grid, they would need to buy more solar panels and a back-up battery, which would roughly cost about R60 000.

Courie further urged those residing close to the home to volunteer their time by visiting and spending time with the elders.

“We have some elders here who do not get visits from their families and that often makes them feel lonely.

“Having someone visit them once in a while would mean a lot to these elders.”

The home accommodates 97 elders and survives mostly from government subsidy and donations from private businesses.

“The subsidy we receive from government has not increased in line with the cost of living and that puts a lot of strain on us.

“We use the subsidy mostly for staff salaries and our electricity bills. The rest of the costs are covered by donations, which is often not enough.”

  • For more information call 021 593 2274 or 082 496 2085.

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