South Africa: Handover of a House to Mrs Ngema in Nongoma

press release






KwaLindizwe: 18 March 2018

It gives me enormous pleasure to witness a life being changed this morning. As we hand over a house to Mrs Ngema, we know that a new chapter is starting for this good lady.

But this is not just about Mrs Ngema. It's about a community of people who care enough to make a difference. I want to thank the Mayor of Nongoma, Councillor Albert Mncwango, and his team at the Municipality, for they looked for a solution. I want to thank the good Samaritans who reached into their pockets to help. And I want to thank the community of KwaLindizwe for taking care of people like Mrs Ngema, even when you have no resources.

There are, unfortunately, many South Africans who struggle just as Mrs Ngema has struggled. Poverty leaves our people vulnerable, because without proper shelter, without a door that locks at night, how can anyone feel safe? My heart breaks for the mothers and grandmothers who hardly sleep for fear of criminals.

It is therefore always good to see a house being built, with solid walls, for a member of the community.

But I know that even a house cannot provide everything we need. The real work of protecting and providing for the vulnerable happens at community level. We must take responsibility for looking after each other, for speaking up when we see abuse, for checking that the elderly and the infirm are eating and being cared for. We must alert the Police when we see or hear anything suspicious. We must stand together against crime.

I have always believed in the power of goodwill. I have seen communities thrive when they unite to share the work of growing, building, healing and producing. When we work together, great things can be achieved.

I say this knowing that more often than not this journey must begin with very little. Our communities don't have vast resources to initiate large scale projects. But we do have something. Everyone has something they can give or do. We have gifts and talents, and when we put them together for a good purpose, with the right motives, remarkable things happen.

That is what happened here in KwaLindizwe. I pray that it will happen again and again, so that many more needs can be met.

Mrs Ngema, I welcome you to your new home.

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