The officials walked from Head office to the shelter under the leadership of DC Human Resource Management, Emmanuel Khoza, and DC Integrated Employee Health and Wellness, Mollet Ngubo. The shelter accommodates about 1000 people, including refugees, disabled persons, women and children. During his address Khoza said the dwellers must remain disciplined and maintain hygiene, though they are facing challenges. He promised that the department will provide ongoing help in the form of maintenance of the building.
He encouraged them not to lose hope in life and that they are not written off as people and that God loves them. He encouraged the spirit of sharing, using a Sepedi idiom, Bana ba motho ba ngwathelana hlogo ya tšie, which loosely translated means to share the little that one has. He conveyed his gratitude to the officials, who with the little they have, dug deep into their pockets to help the needy. Amongst the recipients was Solly Gadebe, a 41-year old wheelchair bound former DCS member who hailed from Nelspruit, Mpumalanga.
Gadebe used to work at Nelspruit Community Corrections from 2008 until 2012. Gadebe said that he resigned in 2012 because of transport challenges which resulted in him always being late for work and it didn’t sit well with his supervisors. This father of four said he was looking for a job and he was willing and prayed that DCS take him back.
Mr Khoza said the department will look into Gadebe’s situation and will take it from there. “I lost everything, my company, house and car, Hazel Pienaar (58), former Chief Executive Officer of Zels Finance Company said. She was tearful when asked about the living conditions in the shelter but said she didn’t have any other place to stay. She has become a motivational speaker for homeless people around Pretoria Central.