Homeless reunited with their families

Field worker Kevin Alexander with Sammy Shibambu, who left the streets of Sea Point, and has been reunited with his family.

The Sea Point Fresnaye Bantry Bay Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association (SFB) Homelessness Outreach Prevention and Education (HOPE) project has reunited at least five street people with their families.

More than R18000 has been raised on BackABuddy to help the organisation create outreach programmes for homeless people, fund transport for street people who would like to leave the streets and go into shelters or back to their families and employ more field and social workers to deal with the situation on the ground and run educational campaigns.

SFB said the project aims to create a one-stop hub for fieldworkers to use as a base from which to work and be accessible for the homeless to visit easily to seek assistance.

The hub would also serve as a drop-off point for donations and food from where it will be sent to the shelters and safe spaces.

The ratepayers’ association has also collaborated with a community organisation, Play Sport4Life, to lend a hand. The head of Play Sport4Life, Miles October, a Fresnaye resident and a committee member of SFB, said Play Sport4Life has sponsored the project to the tune of R50 000 to get it off the ground. “My organisation had no hesitation in getting involved in the project,” said Mr October.

The project has had five people reunited with their families since its inception.

After living on the streets for two years, 20-year-old Sammy Shibambu, has finally left the streets to be reunited with his family in Bronkhorstspruit, near Pretoria.

His family thought he had died after they lost all contact with him when he left home.

This comes after two more Sea Point street people were reunited with their families in Klerksdorp and Knysna by the project.

One person was living on the pavement in Rocklands Road and the other one on Sea Point promenade opposite Worcester Road.

Two more men who lived on the streets of Sea Point left for the Eastern Cape after they were reunited with their families.

Fieldworker Kevin Alexander interviewed them and made contact with their families.