A Heartfelt Day Of Hard Work And Paying It Forward

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The day that was dedicated to the residents of the Langa Cheshire Home, the 27th of August 2011, can be deemed as the day where students really gave their community their all.

This project came as an inspiration from our TSiBA Pay-it-Forward personnel and Student Developer, Loyiso Koyana and was taken up as a partnership by two student societies at TSiBA namely, BMFsc and SIFE. The Langa Cheshire Home is a home that takes care of physically and mentally disabled people who cannot be taken care of by their families. It houses 26 residents, has 28 staff members and one manager, Mama Dineo who has been a part of this home for the past 18 years. I loved how the home is integrated into the community -residents have made friends in the community and some have their families in this community as well.

The students came with such enthusiasm to work, and that they did! They also managed to have loads of fun. The day saw eight rooms, which required painting, painted and one of the residents Vuyokazi couldn’t stop passing by with comments about how beautiful her room looked. We were no experts in painting, the real experts were in the garden, SIFE-TSiBA. SIFE-TSIBA has a project called greenfusion where part of their initiatives is gardening.

They led the gardening project very well as they managed to plant 7 beds with spinach, lettuce, cabbage, onions and beetroot. The seeds were donated by one of the South African Ashoka Fellows Mama Lillian and when they ripen, they will be used for food in the home. The over-harvest will be sold to the Langa community as a fundraising activity for the home.
SIFE is planning on returning, to manage the garden as part of their greenfusion project. Three TSiBA graduates, Xolani Kula (Assistant Project Manager at Oceana Brands) and Adeeb Samsoodien (an entrepreneur) both literally had a huge hand to play on this wonderful day. Xolani’s employers donated tins of fish products to the home, Adeeb offered his services in entertainment and DJ’d. Again, we really appreciate all the TSiBA staff members who contributed to this initiative, and Ntombiza Lingani (graduate and now Marketing Manager at TSiBA) who offered her hands on the day, all the people who planned so tirelessly, all those who donated and of course, all those who came to do the dirty-fun work on the day. May God give ten times back to you!

We came, we took care, and we are moved! This is what I think remains in our hearts as well as those of the residents. What remains with me is the impact we can have in our own communities when we choose to, it’s amazing. Whatever we do in our lives, let’s not ever forget where we come from and the power each person has to make a difference.

Written by: Thokozile Mcopele, BBA3 student

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