By Libuseng Nyaka
QWAQWA – It was a day to remember stroke victim Dimakatso Maepu of Monontsha village was named among 16 beneficiaries who will receive houses built by 50 youth volunteers in partnership with the Human Settlements department and the Bakoena Traditional Council in Maluti-a-Phofung.
In appreciation, Maepu was speechless and out of words to express her delight.
“I can only say I am grateful to God. All of this is because of him. My days of living in a shack are over,” she said in an interview with The Guard during the launch at Monontsha village, one of the most poverty-stricken areas of the eastern Free State.
The launch was held on Thursday and was attended by the principal chief of the Bakoena, Morena e Moholo Moremoholo Mopeli.
The chief director of the National Department of Human Settlement Litha Jolobe said the programme was aimed at showcasing and highlighting socio-economic prospects for young people in the construction value chain, while ensuring skills transfer and giving them an opportunity to contribute in providing decent, quality houses to vulnerable households in their communities.
“Through human settlements development, we not only provide homes, but also seek to achieve other sustainability and developmental priorities such as economic development, job creation and addressing socio economic priorities of government.
“Our aim is to engage with the beneficiaries to ensure that we implement responses according to their needs.”
A representative of the provincial Human Settlements department, Madibuseng Irene Mofuli promised to come back to complete unfinished houses.
“We have asked the municipality to compile a list of uncompleted houses so that we can come back and finish them.”
Expressing his appreciation, Chief Mopeli said: “You have outdone yourselves in assisting this community. Thank you for your quick response when it was needed most. To the youth, I like your spirit of doing things yourselves instead of waiting for government to develop our community. You have restored the dignity of our people, especially those most in need.”
Nontsikelelo Makaula · Intergovernmental Relations Manager at National Youth Development Agency Responsible for special projects who have also attended the event promised mobilise government and municipality to ensure volunteers are employed.
“We saw that there is a target of 3000 houses that are going to be build .We saw an opportunity for development , besides training and an opportunity for you, people must benefit in terms of employment. Moving from here, we would like to mobilise the department and municipality to employ these young people. As NYDA we will be here to offer some of our programmes where we offer grant, the money that you do not pay back.We are excited because the economic activities in this community will benefit the youth
Fifty Youth Volunteers from Monontsha Village in QwaQwa, are participating in the construction of 16 houses allocated for the elderly, disabled, women and child-headed households.
This provides them an opportunity to contribute in providing decent, quality houses to vulnerable households in their communities.
Meanwhile 16 beneficiaries of houses also received blankets from Chief Mopeli which form part of celebrating his birth day.