• Octavia Makgati

Vuyokazi Kitsi

Vuyokazi Kitsi was one of the fearless women who marched against gender-based violence in 2019, representing the voices of women who can no longer defend themselves, a helpless child's cry, and families that are affected by the violence against women and children.

she was born and bred at Plettenberg blay in the Western Cape province, a speaker and a humanitarian that challenges the social norms that lead to gender-based violence by empowering women and teaching youth to be independent, she is also devoted to community development, helping to fight poverty and restore dignity in the lives of the underserved community.

After completing her higher certificate in community development with the University of Western Cape, she started collaborating with government Departments to empower and develop underprivileged communities. She collaborated with the department of agriculture and the department of water and sanitation to install Jojo tanks in the community and encourage people to fight poverty by planting their vegetable garden, the project was successful and they've managed to install Jojo tanks in 100 households.

She also makes Christmas donation to disadvantaged households, the idea was after she realised that they are families that do not fully enjoy the spirit of Christmas due to lack of basic capacity to participate and celebrate Christmas, she started donating food and other Christmas essentials to revive the spirit of Christmas to those households.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, as she is well-known for her involvement in community development and her good principles in humanity, people come to her house to ask food and other basic needs but at times she didn’t have enough to feed the whole community so she collaborated with other community members to make a monthly contribution towards buying food for households that are greatly affected by the pandemic.

During their distributing of the food parcel to the community, she discovered a family that was living below poverty life. A father living with his five children in a one-room shack that was in a very bad condition, old, lopsided, and badly armored. The family struggled with basic needs and they only afford to have one meal a day. She was appalled but motivated to restore their dignity and hope, she engaged with different sponsors and community members to join together to build a comfortable shelter for the family. The project was a success and the family is now living in a place they can proudly call home and their dignity is restored.

Moreover, she has managed to secure a sponsorship for post-matric studies for one of the children who matriculated but did not afford to continue with her post matric studies.

"One of the challenges is politics verse community work because when you do humanitarian work from the goodness of your heart, politicians perceive you as someone who is trying to be superior to them, so your vision has to be stronger to overcome such challenges," she said

Her plea is for people to join together to instill good values in the community and never be ignorant of each other's struggles

"Sometimes it’s not the matter of not having but the matter of combining our resources to see how we can help households that are struggling," she said.

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