Gift of the Givers to Continue Western Cape Operations Until Sunday, Langa Still in Distress

Gift of the Givers to Continue Western Cape Operations Until Sunday, Langa Still in Distress

  • The Gift of the Givers has confirmed extending its humanitarian aid relief efforts in weather-affected Western Cape communities
  • Gift of the Givers said in an exclusive interview with Briefly News that the move came amid conditions which were expected to worsen
  • Project Manager Ali Sablay said operations would continue until Sunday as thousands were dependable on daily hot meals
Gift of the Givers responds to humanitarian crisis in Western Cape
The Gift of the Givers NPO has responded to the humanitarian crisis in the Western Cape. Image: Gift of the Givers
Source: Original

CAPE TOWN — The Gift of the Givers will continue operations to deliver humanitarian aid to communities devastated by the severe weather battering the Western Cape.

This is as the province prepares for even harsher weather as the rest of the country finds reprieve from a recent cold snap.

Gift of the Givers' extend Western Cape operations

The South African Weather Service (SAWS) has predicted another intense cold front, which will bring flooding on Thursday.

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SAWS measured that rain exceeded 200mm in Cape Town by Tuesday morning after a bout of particularly freezing weather characterised by a series of cold fronts over the weekend.

The City of Cape Town Disaster Risk Management Centre actioned multiple road closures on Wednesday morning amid expectations of worsening conditions.

Centre spokesperson Sonica Lategan urged residents to avoid unnecessary travel due to the dangerous conditions.

"[Current] assessments indicate [that] more than 14,000 [residential and other] structures have been affected by flooding or wind damage," Lategan said.
"The City expects rain to continue throughout [Wednesday]. The SAWS's level 8 warning for disruptive rain on Thursday remains in place."

The Western Cape education department has since confirmed that five schools stayed closed due to flooding and infrastructure damage.

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"A total of 82 schools have reported damage. The majority of cases are minor, while 31 are considered serious, including [instances] in some schools where [strong winds] tore off the roof sheeting," education officials said.

Lategan said NGO partners, including Gift of the Givers, had spearheaded soft relief efforts in various parts of the city over the past two days and handed over 20,000 meals, 2,550 blankets and 2,450 beanies.

Numbers on the increase

Gift of the Givers Project Manager Ali Sablay spoke to Briefly News on Wednesday about the situation on the ground.

"Gift of the Givers teams have been on the disaster site since day one. The calls started pouring in on Wednesday morning, the first day of the inclement weather for the Western Cape," Sablay told Briefly News.
"Our teams [undertook] assessments in various informal settlements that have reached out to us from the early hours of the morning [on Sunday]."

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He said the areas affected were Nyanga, KTC informal settlement, Phillipe East, Phillipe, Phola Park, Langa, Mfuleni, Nomzamo, Lwandle, Macassar, Mbekweni and Khayelitsha.

Sablay said the organisation's humanitarian aid distribution determined that the number of destitute people and others affected surpassed 15,000.

He added that the numbers had risen over the last 24 hours, with areas outside the Cape Town metropole also seeking aid.

"Our operations will continue until Sunday as thousands depend on us for their daily hot meals. The community of Langa is still in distress as gale-force winds destroyed nearly 800 structures, leaving 4,000 people in the open."

Cold snap hits SA from Sunday to Tuesday

In related news, Briefly News reported that a frigid spell beckoned for South Africa from Sunday, 7 July, to Tuesday, 9 July, as the country braced for the real winter business to begin.

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Cape Town weather: River bursts its banks into Newlands Avenue

This saw a cold snap battering the country and stretched into the new week until Tuesday. SAWS said this was due to a series of cold fronts moving across the Western, Eastern and Northern Cape provinces.

Source: Briefly News

Tshepiso Mametela avatar

Tshepiso Mametela Tshepiso Mametela is a seasoned journalist with eight years of experience writing for online and print publications. He is an evening/weekend editor at Briefly News. He was a general news reporter for The Herald, a senior sports contributor at Opera News SA, and a reporter for Caxton Local Media’s Bedfordview and Edenvale News and Joburg East Express community titles. He has attended media workshops, including the crime and court reporting one by the Wits Justice Project and Wits Centre for Journalism in 2024. He was a member of the Forum of Community Journalists (FCJ) from 2018 to 2020.