Donation set to change the lives of local elderly

“This is going to change the lives of elderly people who benefit from this centre.” These were the words of Grace Mnikathi of the Sivulizandla Community Centre in Willowfontein after she received a donation from Avbob last week Wednesday.

Avbob donated a big tent, four tables and chairs to the centre. The company also donated a month’s worth of groceries, beads for beadwork and soup and snacks. Avbob plans to make regular donations as part of the company’s 100-year celebrations.

Echo previously reported on how Mnikathi takes care of 150 elderly people in the area in just her small mud house.

Speaking to Echo, Mnikathi said she is excited by the donation and it will enable her to make a huge difference to the centre and the residents.

“This tent will come in very handy because I have many people now that I am taking care of. The house was too small and other people had to stay outside during our meetings and that broke my heart.

“Sometimes you will find that when it is hot and because there is not enough space, some of them [elderly] were forced to sit outside.

“We are very grateful to Avbob — we hope that they continue and help other people as well,” she said.

Mnikathi, who sells food at Silwanetshe Primary School for a living, said she wants to continue to help other people in her community, not just elderly people but any individual or family that needs help.

“I just need support from anyone who can assist and donate building material so that we can have a proper house that we will use as our venue.

“We also have a problem with toilets. I only have two pit toilets that I built but, because of the number of people that are using them, they will be full soon,” said Mnikathi.

Avbob area manager Digby Layzell said they were touched by Mnikathi’s story.

“It is heartwarming to see Mnikathi’s initiative in helping the community. She feeds the elderly without expecting anything from anyone. That is amazing. We could not ignore such great work. She also keeps them active, which is wonderful. Some of them were lonely but they have found a home here … We cannot help everyone but her story touched us,” Layzell said.