Home Features Community Sokubong’ omncane, kubong’ omkhulu!: Chanted a grateful Gogo!

Sokubong’ omncane, kubong’ omkhulu!: Chanted a grateful Gogo!

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Vulindlela Orphanage
Vulindlela Orphanage

Gogo MaTshabalala, the matron and founder of Vulindlela Orphanage chanted a heartwarming chorus, “Sokubong’ omncane, kubong’ omkhulu…”. The chorus was clearly dedicated towards thanking the Almighty. The whole house then roared in unison as every came to her support, with some of us not even familiar with the song-turned-vote-of-thanks. She was in a jovial mood of gratitude after a collective team of Rotarians graced her institution to spend the day with elder and her bunch of grand kids.

Four of the Rotaract clubs of Bulawayo, namely: the Rotaract Club of Bulawayo West, the Rotaract Club of the Women’s University in Africa, the Rotaract Club of Matopos and the Rotaract Club of N.U.S.T. collaborated with Mr & Mrs Sinkwa for the activity. The visit stands to be one of the many philanthropic works which the Rotarians conduct at least twice each month.

The Presidents of the Four Rotaract Clubs…

Mr & Mrs Sinkwa donated dozens of superior white and brown bread to the orphanage. The bread is set to cater for the orphanage for some time. The recipients welcomed the sincere donation with warm hands as they composed and sang songs dedicated to the bakery team. They even took photos hugging some loaves as a mother would cherish her fragile newborn.

The Group Picture with everyone…

The Vulindela Orphanage Care is located at Gampu Avenue in Mpopoma, one of Bulawayo’s oldest high density townships. According to Gogo, the centre is home to about 20 orphans who lost their parents/guardians to HIV/AIDS. But the facility has the ability to accomodate more. The old lady together with two other caregivers run the place. It serves a home to kids under 18, and also serves as a nursery school to resident toddlers.

All the school-going children are taken to primary, secondary level up to tertiary level until they are successful in life. Various financial donations that are received by the centre from a wide range of Philanthropic organizations and individuals facilitate on education. The non-school-going adolescents learn either the craft of textile, weaving or agriculture. This is an opportunity to earn a life skill they can trade as a source of income and reduce the likelihood of teenage pregnancy or substance abuse due to idleness especially girls.

The Rotarians arrived from all the four cardinal corners of the City of Bulawayo at about 2 pm. The program the began at 2.30pm after everyone had settled down. The president of the Rotaract Club of Bulawayo West, Emmanuel Tsingidzi, who also was one of the co-organizers was the MC. After the opening prayers and remarks were given, everyone present had to introduce them-self the Rotarian style (stating your name, what you like to eat and what you are famous for).

The President of the Rotaract of Bulawayo West Emmanuel Tsingidzi…

We broke the ice, then the first speaker from the medical field opened a discussion on ‘Drugs and substance abuse’. This was to shade light on: what drugs are; the reasons why people take drugs especially youths; the negative effects of drug and substance abuse. He also gave a case study on how costly rehabilitation activities are in terms of money and time.

The First Speaker addressing the issue of Drugs And Substance Abuse…

The second speaker, Memory Moyo a psychologist by profession gave an educational presentation on ‘Farming Pineapples’. Pineapple scientifically known as Ananas comosus is a tropical plant with an edible fruit, it is the most economically significant plant in the family Bromeliaceae. The Rotarians brought pineapples which Memory used for demonstrate and elaborate her presentation. She enlightened us on various methods of planting the fruit, the soil requirements, temperature requirements, water requirements and many more. After the presentation it was time for games, dances and music. This was a means to build a connection amongst the Rotarians and with the resident children. We then shared a meal of bread and butter and Mazoe.

The Second Speaker teaching on the farming of Pineapple…

Gogo Matshabalala then gave a long history of the orphanage. The orphanage dates back to as old as the early 80’s on the earlier days of the HIV pandemic. When the HIV pandemic broke worldwide and more specifically in Zimbabwe, there were no effective control members. Anyone infected had a guaranteed death. The most affected are mostly parents. This left many children orphaned in the old lady’s community.

She then sought to practice home-based care program to cater for her ill-friends, most of which passed away. After the government introduced measures to counter the effects of pandemic, Gogo had fresh wounds on what to do with the children of her late friends. She collaborate with eight other women to form Vulindlela Guardians. This served to cater for the children of HIV-deceased parents/guardians. This is what grew to become the now-named Vulindlela Orphanage care.

Gogo Matshabalala giving the history of Vulindlela Orphanage

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