by Thamie Mokoena…For the community of Bramfisher in Soweto it is business as usual as people move around as if life is normal and as if the country is not on lock down due to the virus. Yesterday some one was using a whistle to call people out side to the streets because a whistle is used for many things in the townships be it to alert the community for meetings if someone is in danger. In this case the person whistled calling other community members to the street corner for the meeting regarding food parcels as food insecurity is becoming a problem since many people have not been going to work to afford food.
by Michael…PMB Covid 19 Concerned Collective is an alliance of social justice organizations that have joined forces to help and support the poor and vulnerable communities in fight against corona virus during the nationwide lockdown which was announced by the President of the Republic of South Africa. The organizations such as PACSA, CREATE, Midlands Community Initiative (MCI) and Arise & Shine Community Organization. The PMB Covid 19, using the principles of SEE,JUDGE & ACT took a collective decision based on the needs of the communities with uMgungundlovu District to mobilize support from family members, colleagues from each respective organizations, the business community and community members to support the food parcels drive initiative with an aim to provide food for the needy families. The food parcels under the #sharewithothers was popularised through social media (Whatsapp & Facebook) and has since distributed 50 food parcels to families in need during this lockdown in areas such as Trustfeed, Swaymani, Thembalihle , Azalea ,Edendela ,Cinderella Park and Sobantu. This initiative gave us an opportunity to interact with the community members and to observe the behaviour of people during this lockdown in trying to curb the spread of the corona virus. Most of the precautions that are meant to be followed such as social distancing and washing of hands are seem not to be followed in most of the above mentioned communities that we visited. We are also planning to raise awareness among these communities on the measures they need to take.
Rapule Moiloa in Tembisa…The 16th of April marked the end of episode 1 of the South African lock down and the episode 2 started on 17 April. People are asking each other if these lock downs will really end as they are worried about rentals which are due, school fees, food and other important things. The issue that some of the people are happy with is that alcohol is not being sold because taverns are in between houses and that crime rate is now low.
by Tumi Mokgatle, in Phokeng, Rustenburg local municipality
Day 20 of the lockdown presented a new form of challenges for communities. In Phokeng Ward 4, 5 and 7 wards which are all wards of the ANC. The Councillors issued food parcels but most food parcels did not reach the most needy households.The method used is that community members who attend ward meetings are prioritized as well as those who hold ANC membership cards. The struggle is real as some depend on asking for food from their neighbors who would have benefited. On 15 April 2020, Ward 5 Councillor requested 10 family names as they indicated that they have 10 food parcels. No one knows how the food parcels are rolled out and the provincial authorities are silent. RBA has indicated that they will continue to cater for the families that they know are in needy.