While some areas go without water for weeks, what happens to homes for the elderly and disabled when the Ugu District Municipality fails to fill its water cisterns on time?
That was a question posed by KwaZulu-Natal Legislative Assembly Speaker Nontembeko Boyce at the Khayalethu Love and Care Home in KwaNzimakwe on Tuesday.
Khayalethu is a home for disabled children, and Boyce was in KwaNzimakwe to hand over a borehole to the children’s home. Boyce said when a facility such as Khayalethu is without water, it means a carer has to leave someone they need to look after, to fetch water.
“And we don’t want to see caregivers letting children queue for water. Yes, we can’t be there for caregivers when they wake up in the middle of the night to check on the kids, but we want to be there for them when their taps run dry. At least while they are still trying to call Ugu there is a borehole to supply them and sustain them for a while,” she said.
She added that handing over the drill was part of the Legislative Assembly’s social responsibility. The speaker said the Covid-19 pandemic has shown them that homes that care for different types of people suffer the most during water outages.
Additionally, areas such as Gamalakhe, Manaba, Ramsgate and Hibberdene have been without water for days. Meanwhile, Boyce also donated the stage blue filter replacement, slimline set, cleaning detergents, disposable diapers, washing powder, toiletries, dresses and shoes from the morning at Khayalethu Home of Love and Care.
Inkosi Bhekizimakwe Nzimakwe from KwaNzimakwe Traditional Council said he was grateful for the donation. He said that although they have received a number of donations, they are not enough. “Children living with disabilities have daily needs, from food to clothing, so we would like to encourage anyone who wishes to donate to do so,” Nzimakwe said.
In closing Youth Month, Boyce said the Legislative Assembly did not want to focus on certain youth sessions. She said young people need to remember that they are no longer the leaders of tomorrow saying their time has come.
“Things like sexuality, disability, race and gender should not be part of the future we are trying to build. High rates of unemployment and violent crime that targets people with disabilities as well as the LGBTQI community should be avoided because most of the time they are perpetuated by other young people,” Boyce said.
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