Stiftung Thatha Ithuba
Im Blatt B4
Tel: +41 79 229 95 67
Naydia ist Teil des Black T-Shirt Teams. Eine Gruppe von jungen Leuten, die versucht ihren Freunden und Nachbarn in Imizamo Yethu nach dem Feuer so gut wie möglich zu helfen. Sie verteilen pro Tag 1'000 Malzeiten. Sie helfen wo sie können, doch langsam schwinden auch bei ihnen die Kräfte. Es wird Winter und somit kälter in IY und noch immer sind die Menschen ohne Zuhause.
Hier ein paar Zeilen von Naydia:
A little over fifteen thousand Dontseyakhe residents stood dumbstruck with terror as a fire reduced their homes to ashes. A grey cloud hangs over the Imizamo Yethu township in Hout Bay after a blaze demolishes over 3,000 shacks on 11 March 2017.
The fire is said to have begun at around 23:00 on Friday 10 March 2017 on the eastern part of Dontseyakhe. At the time I was chasing a deadline for an online audition when I heard what sounded like an explosion. We quickly ran outside to see what was going on. There were raging flames on the base of the mountain and it looked like only five homes were affected and by the time, fire brigade combat teams had gone up with their trucks, so there was hope. The rest of Imizamo Yethu went to sleep thinking that the fire was under control only to wake up to 70% of Dontseyakhe in ashes.
People were running around carrying what they could salvage from the consuming fire that was still not put out, six hours later. Children were crying in panic, looking for their mothers in the smoke, it was a sad and chaotic scene. Those who could help, lent a helping hand to remove and save furniture and other belongings that the victims could get to.
It was only before noon on Saturday that the fire was eventually put out. An estimate of 15,000 people were displaced. Sadly, four lives were lost, three belonging to one family - a husband and wife and their young child were trapped in their shack. The other, a gentleman who fell into the flames whilst attempting to put them out.
On Sunday morning, as early as 3 a.m, fire victims were queuing up at the Iziko Lobomi community centre to register for building material as well as other essentials. The process was long and daunting, thousands were not serviced by the end of the day.
The Black T-shirt Team was then established when Yonela Gaga and I could see the unpleasant arrangement that the people were placed in. The people were traumatized, hungry and tired yet were not catered for. At first, we did not have much, so we decided to serve tea and coffee because it was really cold. We invited all the young children we could find into my home to give them something to eat. We reached out to fellow Hout Bay Residents, on a Facebook page called Hout Bay Organized, to donate coffee, tea, sugar and any food they had so that we could prepare for the people. The response was overwhelming and by the end of the day we had served over four hundred people.
We called upon the youth in Imizamo Yethu to help us serve food and drinks, and surprisingly they were willing to play their part. Our voluntary services carried on for three weeks & finally the City of Cape Town began to take responsibility.
On Monday, March 13th the City of Cape Town as well as other contracted government agencies stepped in, giving food and clothing supplies. Even then, the reach was not enough.
Clearly overwhelmed by the ordeal, the City of Cape Town failed to manage the disaster. There were communication breakdowns, relevant issues not being addressed by community leaders. People became more frustrated, on top of everything they had been through. Endless meetings were being held to discuss the way forward, but nothing tangible came about. At first, the people were advised they could start rebuilding, then the next they were told not to.
It has been a month now and Imizamo Yethu is yet to be declared a local disaster area - meaning that only then would the government be able to respond to and fully rehabilitate the people.
There are 240 families living in frame tents on a sports field in Hout Bay. The conditions are not great because the whole setup was not planned properly. Although shelter is provided, health and safety standards are very low. All kinds of people and different of sicknesses under one roof is a disaster in itself.
However, the rest of the fire victims are back in Dontseyakhe, in their rebuilt shacks without water or electricity.
There is a super-blocking project underway that is taking longer than proposed. We have called on for proper development and sanitation for years and it could not have come at a worse time. Although the people are willing to sacrifice their independence and privacy for a better living environment, their patience is being tested.
We were told that the project would be finished in two weeks and that fire victims could move back onto their plots, whereas now, the actual project will take another three months to complete. Temporary Relocation Areas are being setup to accommodate fire victims because the arrangement within Tent City has never been ideal and becoming more uncomfortable. With the people's Human Rights being violated, the TRAs are a far better arrangement.
We are still accepting donations of any kind because when you have lost everything, you are willing to take anything.
We can only help to a certain extent because our resources are limited, a majority of our group are students.
Currently the fire relief team, dubbed The Black T-shirt Team, has depleted drastically so we are not really able to do all that we wanted for the people. Yonela, Yanga and Naydia have decided to work with another team moving forward to make as many as 1'000 meals a day at a restaurant, there are more hands and resources on their side. We help out mostly in the kitchen and distributing of the meals. The food we make goes to the individuals who refused to go live in the tents. There is food coming from three contracted NPOs; Red Cross, Mustafadin as well as NDI. They are paid by the City to make food for the people, but they're inconsistent. For the people who are living in the tents, food is provided there, but I wouldn't say it's nutritious. But people eat because they don't have many options.
We definitely need all the power and hope from above for the coming weeks. We're sorting out baby hampers for mothers in the tents with small babies, most of them aren't working and really need the supplies.