Kathy has lived in 7 de Laan since 2008, but she already gained a lot of respect in the community because of her calm and reasonable nature. Together with Maggy she is the community leader. Therefore she is getting contacted by local churches, associations, the police and the municipal government.
Her past has not been as rosy. Even though she lived in a normal house, she and her children were suffering under her husband’s violence. Not being able to go on like this she ran away from him. But being a single mom in South Africa is not easy. The child benefit is only €15 a month and there is no financial assistance for school uniforms or housing from the government. Nevertheless she raised her children and worked in a preschool which she thoroughly enjoyed.
But in 2003 something terrible happened. Her oldest daughter Felicia suffered from internal hemorrhaging that resulted in several strokes and cardiac arrests. The doctors were able to save her life in the nick of time. Until that tragic year Felicia had been an independent young woman with a good job who could support her mother, but the medical issues left her wheelchair-bound and mentally disabled. Kathy had to cope with this situation all by herself. She had to give up her job to take care of her severely disabled daughter, who needed 24 hour care which the government also did not provide for. Not being able to pay her rent Kathy and Felicia (and also her younger son Mikey) had to look for a new place to stay and found themselves in 7 de Laan.
Years later both of them still live here. Kathy started using her own kitchen to cook supper for the 7 de Laan children. When HOSA showed up she didn’t have to worry about getting groceries anymore. Finally, in August 2015 a big soup kitchen opened up. Because of Kathy’s great qualities regarding management, transparency, her hard work and trustworthiness it was clear, that she and Felicia would be the ones to move into the two small rooms in the soup kitchen. This way the building is always busy and nursing Felicia is getting easier. Because of Kathy’s preschool experience of 17 years she will also be involved in the start up phase of our 7de Laan preschool and is already looking forward to this. Kathy’s story shows so beautifully that Jesus doesn’t leave people alone. He can turn everything into something good, even if we only recognise it afterwards. He loves Kathy so much as well as her commitment and her love for her daughter and other people.
We are convinced that Kathy is not the only one, whose life story has been transformed in 7 de Laan.