A midwife from the Peninsula Maternity Hospital meets children on the Seven Steps in District Six. Picture: Penelope Holmes
A midwife from the Peninsula Maternity Hospital meets children on the Seven Steps in District Six. Picture: Penelope Holmes

R7 for Seven Steps will help keep District Six Museum alive

By Shakirah Thebus Time of article published Jul 9, 2021

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Cape Town - Conceptualised around a weighty symbol of dynamism of the District Six community, the District Six Museum launched its Seven for Seven fundraising initiative.

Although no longer present in Hanover Street, the Seven Steps of stone remains an enduring mark of the life and lives of the former and current community of District Six. Some of these steps can now be found at the museum.

Launched on Wednesday, the campaign will run for 77 days and aims to raise R7 million for the museum.

District Six Museum executive director Siddeeq Railoun said the landmark served as a space for social interaction, embodying the spirit of place and belonging that characterised the community.

During these uncertain and challenging times, as visitor numbers remain low and government Covid-19 regulations unpredictable, Railoun called on the public, in the spirit of community, to support the initiative.

“The community spirit around District Six Museum is strong. It kept us alive through the uncertainty of 2020, however, visitor numbers remain low because of Covid-19. The Seven for Seven initiative is our way forward and is inspired by the iconic District Six Seven Steps.

“This held the spirit of the place, belonging and a coming together of a diverse community in dignity. Your support will keep stories alive and people connected,” said Railoun.

A minimum of R7 or seven in any currency can be donated through platforms on District Six Museum website, to see the continuation of its life-enhancing work and the preservation of heritage.

“This fundraising drive will enable the museum to continue its life-enhancing work. Your support helps us in our mission to enliven public engagement and learning through our exhibitions, oral history campaign, research, expressive arts events and programming. R1 million of the total raised will be reserved to start an endowment fund for the organisation,” said Railoun.

On the Seven Steps, he said: “It is there in spirit. We still take people to the site of the Seven Steps. Physically it is not there, but you feel it’s presence.”

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