The gospel of giving back

2019-07-16 06:00
Residents came to support; some bought boerewors rolls and some made donations.

Residents came to support; some bought boerewors rolls and some made donations. (Sipesihle Notwabaza)

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To embrace the spirit of Ubuntu and to give back to the needy in their area, Kenwyn residents embarked on a blanket drive on Friday 5 July. 

The drive was organised by the Kenwyn Neighbourhood Watch (KNW), a registered non-governmental organisation that conducts patrols in the area in an effort to ensure the safety of the residents, at Woodbury Road Park. 

Concerned residents came together and collected blankets for the destitute. They also made and sold some food in a quest to generate additional funds. 

KNW chairperson Abdullah Fakier said their mandate is to serve the community. They have 40 members that patrol the area and are all vetted by the South African Police Services (SAPS). 

He said they decided to host the event to collect blankets which they will donate to destitute people. Some they will donate to the homeless.

“We will try our best to get as much as we can,” he said. 

He added there is no set target as to how many blankets they get. He also added the event was to highlight the need for residents to get involved in the organisation. 

Project manager Ahmed Bawa said the organisation does not discriminate and will assist wherever it is needed. The event was not just about blankets but anything that is useful, people should feel free to donate, he said.

“We accept anything that is useful from baby clothes, books or any educational material,” he said.

At the event, they sold boerewors rolls which were also sold to people who passed by in an attempt to generate money. 

Bawa said the money made from selling the food will be donated to homes or even buy equipment that is needed by the team. He made mention of equipment such as torches or beanies especially because it is winter season.

He said the team works very hard in trying to keep the area safe. 

“They are always here as early as 03:00 even if it is raining,” he said.

Even though he sang their praises, he also expressed gratitude to the Lansdowne police officers for their support, and their ward councillor, Mark Kleinschmidt. 

He said the team has had success in working with police to bring to book culprits in hijackings, armed robberies and house break-ins.

Residents could be seen walking into the field, some carrying blankets and some coming to buy the rolls. Riyaz Parker, one of the residents that donated some blankets, praised KNW for a “good job”.

“I think it is really awesome. I am proud of our community for having an awareness drive like this,” Parker said.

He revealed he has been a resident in the area for more than 25 years and an event like this was good for the community.

“What I like about it is that it brings the community together. I have also donated because this is something that was instilled in me as a small boy; to give back,” he explained.

His wish is for the organisation to continue with similar events to reach as many people as possible.

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