Celebrating the legacy of Nelson Mandela
For this year’s Mandela Day the South African Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (SATVI) has announced its support for community based soup kitchens in the Cape Winelands District.
“This year we decided to support community based groups who provide soup and other meals, to the poorest of the poor, many of whom are TB patients” Marwou de Kock, Field Site Manager at SATVI explained. This organisation which is attached to the University of Cape Town Health Sciences Faculty will support four soup kitchens in and around Worcester.
For many community members it will be the only balanced meal that they get for the day and could mean the difference between whether they complete their TB treatment or not. Many TB patients struggle to adhere to their treatment program and often give up because the powerful TB drugs are very unpleasant to take without food. The disease also spreads more easily where people are undernourished.
Charmaine Abrahams (Social Responsibility Committee), Councillor Moses Simangala, Nambitha Nqakala (SATVI) and Linda Sibeko (founder and project coordinator of Ikamva Lethu).
“We started the soup kitchen in 2009 from my home”, says Linda Sibeko, founder and project coordinator explained. “We now provide a meal for 60 people for three days every week. We run the kitchen on a voluntary basis and last received funding in 2014 and nothing after that”. The Ikamva Lethu, women’s cooperative is run from the Zweletheba Multipurpose Centre where the members prepare meals three days per week. They also run a bead making project and sell beadwork using the proceeds to sustain the soup kitchen.
Charmaine Abrahams, Elaine Zimri, Lucinda Martinus - community member who runs soup kitchen in Roodewal flats weekly.
TB is caused by Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, a bacteria which mostly infects the lungs, but can also infect other organs like the brain, and even the spine. It is a highly infectious disease that spread through coughing and sneezing. Even though the disease is easily cured with six month treatment many TB patients succumb due to co-infections like HIV or because the bacteria change, making it more difficult to treat. We call these types of TB Multidrug-resistant (MDR) or Extreme Drug Resistant (XDR) TB.
For more information contact: Kelvin Vollenhoven