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Businessman helps the poor in Covid-19 pandemic

Residents in the Kalahari are a little safer from contracting the coronavirus, thanks to the generosity of a Kuruman business­man who donated over 64 000 surgical masks to poor communities.

The wearing of face masks in public became mandatory under new regulations from 1 May when South Africa moved from level 5 lockdown measures to level 4.

While stepping out of his house one morning after lockdown regulations were announced, well-known businessman, Bubbles Dada, realised that there are many people who cannot afford to buy a mask.

While on his way to his business, Rekathusa Funeral Parlour in Kuruman, Dada saw how people tried to cover their faces with just about anything.

People were walking in the street holding pieces of dirty cloth to their faces, wrapping clothing items or bandages around their faces or just pulling the shirts they were wearing over their noses.

Dada says he realised that people who are struggling to put food on the table can’t afford to buy masks.

He says with lockdown putting a heavy toll on the livelihoods of non-essential workers, he imagined many breadwinners would have asked themselves: “Should I buy a mask or food for my family?”

“Buying a mask is the last thing on the minds of poverty-stricken people who live from hand to mouth every day,” Dada adds.

He then decided to respond to this dire need amongst the destitute communities of Kuruman, Olifantshoek, Dingleton, Deben, Van Zylsrus and surrounding areas.

Dada and his employees took up the responsibility of buying surgical face masks and distributing it among the underprivileged.

Dadda says he and his team decided that the best way to reach the poorest of the poor is by donating the masks to clinics and health centre.

During the week of 23 June to 1 July, Rekathusa Funeral Parlour, visited 32 clinics in the John Taolo Gaetsewe and Joe Morolong districts.

Each clinic and health centre received 2 000 surgical masks as a donation from Rekathusa Funeral Parlour and Econo Group Funeral Administrators.

These masks were then distributed among the needy, free of cost.

Dada says this project is part of their social responsibilities to assist in curbing the spread of the deadly virus.

“It’s an eye-opening experience, seeing what difficulties and backlogs people in poorer communities face.”

He says they have started working on the second part of this project.

Rekathusa Funeral Parlour will soon be assisting the Bophirima and ZF Mgcawu districts.

It’s an eye-opening experience, seeing what difficulties and backlogs people in poorer communities face. – Bubbles Dada

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