From left to right: Nancy Letlalo, Violet Motau, Charles Zauya, Tshilidzi Muleya and Sarah Ndou are members of Messina Community Home Based Care Project who volunteered to work for the homeless people at Musina showground during the lockdown period.

In this world of today, where some of the community members think for themselves only, there are still people who are prepared to work and dedicate their life, energy and time for free to help the less privileged. This is the encouraging story from the members of Messina Community Home Based Care Project. Since the beginning of the lockdown, these five individuals wake up every day and head to Musina showground where they cook, clean and feed more than 200 homeless people who have been housed there as a precautionary measure to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Their leader, Violet Modau said that when they heard that there were homeless people who were housed at the showground, they never thought twice. “We heard that business people were donating food and other essentials for those homeless people and we thought it would be best for us to volunteer ourselves. We have been there cooking, cleaning and doing other domestic work for them. We understand that these people did not choose to be what they are and we felt that we have a role to play to assist them.”

Modau said they arrive at the showground every day at 07h00 in the morning and leave at 17h00. “We arrive there early and prepare breakfast for everyone. We would then clean and prepare lunch for them and serve them. After that we have to make sure that their dinner is ready before we knock off. We do this every day, including Saturdays and Sundays.”

Modau’s colleague, Sarah Ndou says she enjoys working for the less privileged. “We don’t even know one single person from them but we feel it is important to help them. Some of them tell us how they flee from their countries and it is very painful. There are others who come as far as the Democratic Republic of Congo and they do not have relatives here. It is our duty to make sure that they feel at home during these trying times when the coronavirus pandemic is swiftly terrorizing the world.”

Ndou thanks businesspeople and individuals who are donating food and other essentials for the homeless people at Musina showground. “The availability of food and essentials make our job easy because it keeps us going. Imagine if they run out of food – this will definitely mean that we don’t have anything to cook for them. We really thank the donors for their good work.”

One of the homeless people housed at Musina showground is Tawanda Moyo who originates from Zimbabwe. He said: “My parents died many years ago and I travelled on foot to South Africa hoping for a better life. I could not find a job and ended up staying in the streets of Musina. I thank everyone who is playing a role to make sure that we are safe here at Musina showground. The risks of coronavirus is minimised here because there are more controls than the ordinary lives that we live in the streets.”

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