Tourvest will rebuild ten homes for disadvantaged Diepsloot residents as part of its tradition of improving the living standards of township inhabitants through the provision of decent shelter ahead of Nelson Mandela’s birthday on 18 July.
Now in its fifth year, this humanitarian initiative will see the completion of 45 low-cost homes for residents in Diepsloot and Alexandra at an investment totalling hundreds of thousands of rands.The homes to be rebuilt have been identified by the NPO organisation Afrika Tikkun, in consultation with the community’s leaders and social workers, as those belonging to people most in need of better living conditions.
Afrika Tikkun, which has Nelson Mandela as its patron-in-chief, provides education, health and social services to children and their families through centres of excellence in South African townships. Its mission is to develop children and the youth into contributing citizens and its projects are located in Diepsloot, Alexandra, Hillbrow and Orange Farm in Johannesburg as well as Mfuleni and Delft in Cape Town.
Taking place on Thursday, 16 July, the exercise will involve ten teams of eight employees with each team assisted by a professional local builder. A similar amount of additional Tourvest volunteers will assist with a greening initiative, which involves teaching young learners about recycling and food security, as well as with refurbishments of the school library at Afrika Tikkun’s Wings of Life Community centre.
Tourvest chief operating officer Judi Nwokedi says the company enjoys a productive and rewarding partnership with Afrika Tikkun, which includes regular donations of food, blankets and stationery. Additionally, the group hosts several functions each year for Afrika Tikkun’s learners in grades 9 to 12 as well as post matriculants in Afrika Tikkun’s Career Readiness Programme. These functions are aligned to key national events which resonate with Tourvest and are aimed at providing corporate guidance on issues such as school subject choices, career and lifestyle options.
Examples of these activations include career guidance on the national Take a Girl Child To Work Day; a focus on subject choices during Tourism Month in September; a meeting with the group’s top female managers for outstanding female achievers around national Women’s Day in August; and an executive breakfast with Tourvest’s top management for aspiring learners on World Aids Day in December.
“We have been told that the rebuilding of homes is among the greatest contributions we have made to date to the quality of life of those community members and that this initiative remains transformative with a high impact value that meets some of the most pressing needs in the informal settlement” she says.