From the news desk

NGOs hard at work to assist storm victims

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Volunteers from Muslims relief organisation sprang into action on Wednesday to assist hundreds of Capetonians affected by the flash floods and gale force winds overnight. Scores of homes were damaged by the strong winds and heavy rains last night, with trees blown over in many suburbs.

Musatadafin Foundation director Gaironesa Johnstone says rooftops in Tafelsig, Kapteinsklip and Crossroads have been worst affected, and thusfar, they have assisted 200 people. By late Wednesday, Mustadafin provided humanitarian relief to 2000 residents in Hout Bay, 54 in Westbank, 40 in Los Angeles in Old Faure and six in Surrey Estate.

“It’s mostly rooftops, doors and wendy houses that have been damaged. The flooding has been minimised and not as disastrous as expected,” said Johnstone.

“But we were told to be on standby for the next few hours as there will be a downpour as forecasted by the weather service.”

Johnstone said they are distributing supplies for roof repairs, particularly black sheeting.

“We haven’t had enough black sheeting. We know it’s not something people want to give due to fire hazards, but it’s want the community wants. We are also in need for winter clothing and blankets, as well as anything that can keep people warm,” she urged.

“Right now, we need all the help we can get. We also want people to contact us to be on be standby for bakkies or 4x4s [for delivery of aid] should the need arise.”

People can drop off any donations at the NGO at 18 Belgravia Road opposite Wembley or call Mustadafin Foundation on 021 633 0010 / 60 / 99.

The Al Imdaad Foundation in the Western Cape distributed hundreds of blankets to a host of shelters, which had opened its doors to the influx of homeless people seeking relief from the rain. The foundation’s Western Cape project coordinator Maulana Yusuf Rajah said blankets were distributed to the Haven Night Shelter, which accommodated an additional 200 people at one of its facilities, many who were forced to sleep on floors.

The City of Cape Town also requested help for three shelters, the Tygerberg Association of Street People in Bellville, the Ubuntu Circle of Courage in Blackheath and the Happy Valley home in Simonstown. The relief NGO also launched its Winter Warmth campaign in the Hague in Delft on Wednesday, where essential winter items were donated to residents.

“We are so fortunate to be in our homes, yet there are hundreds of people sleeping on the streets, that have been left vulnerable as a result of the severe weather,” said Rajah.

Meanwhile, the City of Cape Town’s disaster management officials had their hands full on Wednesday. At last count, 97 dwellings were reported flooded in Macassar Village, leaving 400 people affected. The South African Red Cross Society is providing humanitarian relief, although no emergency shelter has been activated. In Hout Bay, 362 dwellings were affected in Disa Park and Madiba Square. Emergency shelter has been activated in the Green Hall and NGO partner, HDI is providing humanitarian relief.

Other City departments are clearing away uprooted trees and other blockages that have occurred as a result of the rain and gale-force winds and attending to residents in Council-owned properties and those in informal settlements requiring assistance with damage to their structures.

A roof blown off in Lavender Hill resulted in two injuries– an adult female and minor female. Roofs were also blown off in the Strand Area, Kalkfontein, Delft, Mfuleni, Mandalay.

Trees were uprooted in Durbanville, Delft, Platterkloof, Crawford, Bridgetown, Upper Woodstock, Maitland and Plumstead (tree landed on a block of flats no injuries).

Electricity cables were down in Athlone, Weltevreden Valley, Pelican Park Area, Schaapkraal, Goodwood, Boston, Parow Valley.

Many informal settlements homes had roof damage and shacks were blown away in Imizamu Yethu, Hout Bay and Macassar Village. Emergency sheltering has been activated.

There has been one confirmed fatality within the metropole; a 60-year-old man died earlier today when a wall collapsed onto his wendy house in Lavender Hill. There are also reports of four additional fatalities as a result of a fire. VOC


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