Words: Shannon Smith / Photos: Joanie Fredericks
Since the Covid-19 lockdown was announced, it’s taken a little time for the various levels of the impact of the situation to really hit home. Our first reaction was to contemplate what this means in our personal capacity. Then we started to imagine what this means for the wider community – and then for the nation as a whole. It reminded us that we are not separate from anyone or anything. In fact, the very essence of this virus is evidence of how very connected we all are.
One thing has been prominent, and that is the beautiful way that all the members of the community have jumped to help one another. With us and our volunteers, it’s been no different. The circumstances we find ourselves in now speak to every single one of our Principles. For this specific initiative, we’re talking about Communal Effort and Civic Responsibility.
It has been spectacular to see how much the communities have all pulled together to help give resources, time, energy, money and love to help others. This lockdown experience is something completely new to all of us in the world, and we are feeling our way through this with love in our hearts and gifts at our fingertips – and one way we’re feeling our way along has been through connecting and working with Joanie Fredericks, an established and well respected Community Leader from Mitchell’s Plain.
She is also the Director and Co-Founder of NEAD Community Development NPC, which has done some solid work for the community up until this point. Right now, the work being done is pretty epic – and together, so far, we have:
• Helped to feed 100s of children & elderly daily in the Mitchell’s Plain area
• Provided about 250 litres of hand sanitiser
• Delivered sanitary items for ladies
• Been donated with airtime for the humans on the ground to stay connected
• Created a donations fund to acquire ongoing essential items
• Made and delivered masks to the community and humans working on the ground
This has helped to change many lives & make lives easier, but we would love to get more assistance. There are many people out there who would love to help, but they have no idea how. If you are one of these people, this is your chance!
We are still needing:
– Volunteers on the ground! We are needing humans to help hand out food, chat with
authorities and to be a right-hand (wo)man). Joanie has a permit to drive during
lockdown, as this is an essential service. Depending on your area, she can fetch you.
Details can be discussed internally.
– Food donations (Can be pre-made meals, snack packs or items that food can be made
– Masks (If you’re one of the creative ones who’s able to make masks – We’d love to share
– Hand sanitiser
– Dettol soap
– Wet Wipes
– Small buckets – We are looking at educating the children about washing their hands
while they get their food. The idea is to give them each their own bucket so that they can
wash hands & be reminded that hands need to stay clean.
– Items to keep children busy while they need to stay indoors – These kids are used to
running around outside on a daily basis. They don’t have access to toys or anything that
keeps them occupied for indoor use. If you have anything that could contribute, please
let us know. The kids are all aged between 3 & 15, so there isn’t a limit on the nature of
the toys. This can be anything along the lines of: colouring books & pencil crayons, Lego,
Play dough, board games & puzzles, educational games
There is no limit really!!
Anything that you feel would be useful for this initiative. Water, for instance….?
Thank You To Our Volunteers!
We’d like to thank the volunteers who’s already jumped to help – Subhas Shah, Sarah Fletcher, Luciana Fasani and Clair Harriman, just to name a few.
You are all legends & we are SO grateful for each and every one of you. Let’s keep this beautiful gift of the giving alive. It lives in each one of us & it truly comes to light during times like this. It is unchartered territory & unsettling times for many – But it is an opportunity to grow, to love one another and to extend our kindness beyond the confinements of our own lockdown.
Help Others In The Crisis – Make A Donation
If you’d like to donate to this, please use the below banking details:
Mitchells Plain CAN Donations Account:
FNB Gold Business Account
Account Holder: J Frederiks
Account Name: Ladies Own Transport Services
Account Number: 62830121828
If you have any other ideas or ways to fit your plans into ours, we’re wide open for feedback from the community – please connect with us at [email protected] to get involved.
Now is the time to shine. Come on Burners, let’s fight fear by giving love!