Last night (Tuesday,the 1st of December) the residents of 7de Laan were surprised by a fire that destroyed five homes. Thanks be to God that no one was hurt. After the flames were extinguished and hence it was made sure that no other shacks (that are built closely together and of very flammable matierials) were affected, we were able to house the now homeless families in the Hope Community Centre for the night.
At the moment the incidents of wild fires (along the slopes of Cape Town’s mountains) and in the townships are numerous. Just a few days ago 4000 people in one of Cape Town’s townships Masipumelele lost their homes and belongings in a fire. Two people even lost their lives.
Unfortunately, such fires are not uncommon in the hot summer months, encouraged by strong winds and this year’s drought. A cigarette butt or candle pushed over at night can often be enough to cause such a catastrophe. The shacks are mostly made of cardboard, plywood and plastic and are packed together so closely that a fire engine can barely get to the scene, or sometimes not at all. By the time hoses have been rolled out far enough to reach many more homes can start burning.
In this context we can be thankful that nothing worse happened last night in 7de Laan. Nonetheless, these five families, who have painstakingly collected their furniture, clothes and building materials over the years, are now facing the “nothing”. HOSA is on the ball with the city council and our own contacts to help these individuals build up their lives again, bit by bit.
If you want to assist the fire victims in 7de Laan, please do so here. We are grateful for your help!