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Pandemic sparks good deeds

Written by Kgaogelo Letsebe

A church congregation in Ga-Rankuwa, north of Tshwane, is doing all it can to assist the needy during the COVID-19 pandemic.

South Africans have been hard-hit by the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), with many losing loved ones and struggling to earn a living during these difficult times.  A group of congregants from Ga-Rankuwa are reaching out to their community to lend a helping hand.

But the pandemic has also resulted in stories and acts of hope, with people standing together and offering each other help and support.

This is the case for the Ga-Rankuwa community in Gauteng.

Following the Level 5 lockdown in March last year, the Ga-Rankuwa Presbyterian Church’s Reverend Thando Mpambani put a Church in Society Committee in place to help people in need. 

“The journey started with the vision to support the needy. We initially identified 12 families that were in dire need. The needs varied, but a common theme was food,” says committee Chairperson Khutjo Leburu.

The committee rallied the church’s congregation and neighbours to put substantial food parcels together.

“COVID-19 continues to have a profound effect on society, therefore it’s everyone’s responsibility to share the little we have with those in need. Instead of just having a food drive, we decided to run various drives.

“This year alone we have distributed school shoes to needy families, thousands of second-hand and new shoes to Shoes4souls, toiletries to 86 Grade 7 learners at Ikageng Primary School and we are busy with a blanket drive,” says Leburu.

While the Level 5 lockdown is a thing of the past, its effect still lingers and many families are still struggling to recover financially.

Leburu says that as long as there are families in need, the church’s work in the community is not done.

“Churches, as institution of God, are mandated to support others and fulfil the Messiah’s mission. It is time churches start playing active roles in the community, open their doors to the needy and stop operating in isolation. We aim to continue to do this,” she adds.