International model and youth activist Chelsi Shikongo raised N$ 20 000 to support Twaloloka fire victims. These funds were raised through her GoFundMe account.
Shikongo, who is pursuing her modelling career abroad, has worked for notable companies such as Woolworths, Style Magazine, Truworths, Sorbet, First National Bank and Milan fashion.
The day the blaze broke out, Shikongo created a GoFundMe account, where good samaritans could contribute money to support the victims.
As a highly connected person, Shikongo used that to her advantage to raise funds abroad to support people in her community.
"Since I have a lot of friends overseas and many people know me, I decided to create an account where they could donate," said Shikongo.
Shikongo said the situation is close to her heart and it hurts her to see her community burning down.
"I did what I could do best and came together with those who were willing to help and tried to donate with what we have," She said.
In an interview with Entertainment Now!, Shikongo blamed the top authorities for the incident, saying: "Shack fire has become a norm in the Erongo region because people do not have proper housing".
"We have been having fire outbreaks in the coastal towns and they knew about this; yet, we have to come to this tragic incident for them to step in. If only they listened to when those people were fighting for land, over 150 people would not have lost their shacks in the fire."
Shikongo said raising funds is more than just a gesture of goodwill; it is personal to her since she grew up in a similar situation as that of the victims.
To ensure the donations benefit the right people, she partnered with a local charity, October Foundation, to compile a list of items the victims need, which she will then buy with the money she raised.
Asked when she started giving back to the community, Shikongo said her charity work was influenced by her mother, who is the founder of 'Face of Namibia', aimed at empowering women, upcoming entrepreneurs and fighting poverty.
"My mother has always been giving back to the community through her expo and I have taken that onto myself. When I could, during winter, I would make soup for people in Windhoek," she narrated.
Currently, Shikongo is running a youth empowerment campaign that promotes inclusiveness and comprehensive sex education, called 'I can say no' and she will also be launching her 'Chelsi Shikongo Foundation' soon, which she said is hoping to raise one billion Namibian dollars by the end of next year.
The foundation is aimed at supporting marginalised people of the Erongo region.
"With that money, I plan to provide people of Twaloloka with water and electricity."
She urged people to continue donating through the GoFundMe account.
The outspoken model advises people of Twaloloka not to give up on their goals.
"Everything happens for a reason and some blessings are very much in disguise. I hope they don't lose their faith; we are here to support them," she concluded.