Goal: R5,000.00 | Still Needed: R5,000.00 | Total Supporters So Far: 0 | Amount of People in Need: 37
In any community, the elderly are all too often ignored or swept aside after they have passed working age. In the poor community of Solomondale, Sebayeng, however, the problem is much more serious than society disregarding them. Because of skyrocketing unemployment rates in the area, destitute youths are preying on the elderly people left alone at home. They are committing heinous violent crimes, from theft and abuse, all the way to rape and murder of vulnerable elderly people. They are perceived as easy targets and are too frail to fight back.
Founder of Re A Tseba Old Age Home, Gilbert Maphuma Ramohlale, has witnessed the violence and heartache of this victimization in his community firsthand. Along with a few other concerned residents, he decided that something urgently had to be done to keep these old people out of harm’s way. And so, Re A Tseba Old Age Home was born.
Re A Tseba is a place of safety and peace of mind for the elderly people of Solomondale. Instead of being locked up inside their homes each day, left alone and in fear, elders can come together and spend their days knitting, weaving, singing, dancing and gardening at Re A Tseba Old Age Home. Gilbert and his team of 6 volunteers facilitate all manner of engaging activities, from reading and visiting crèche children to holding granny beauty contests!
Re A Tseba Old Age Home started operating out of a shack, and now barely fits their 37 (and counting!) members into a single room. Although their space is tiny, these golden oldies make the best of each day in a safe, positive environment. Unfortunately, due to the absence of any funding, 2 glaring problems face Re A Tseba that, if not resolved, could exclude a huge number of at-risk elders from the program.
Firstly, they need to be able to feed the seniors. Without food for them, these elderly people cannot attend because they need to take their medication with a meal. Right now, founder Gilbert relies on money from his own pocket, as well as whatever they can get from community outreach, which is dismally little.
Secondly, Re A Tseba has a huge problem with transport. The seniors cannot walk several kilometers a day to get to the facility, so Gilbert uses his personal Bakkie to pick them up whenever possible. Needless to say, it is very uncomfortable for frail grannies to sit in the back of a Bakkie. It is Gilbert’s dream to collect enough funds to afford a van or Combi to transport physically limited elderly people safely to Re A Tseba.
Eventually, Gilbert envisions turning Re A Tseba into a proper live-in senior centre to accommodate those people who are homeless or abused at home, but this will cost far more than he can supply out of his own pocket and sporadic donations alone.
Photographer: Ntsoane Kgothatso from Shutter Ninjas Photography | Voice Artist: Sisipho Mbopa | Writer: Chelsea de Beer
Type of Cause:Community, Development, Elderly