SHARING IS CARING: Homeless people have extended this garden so others can benefit. Picture: Cindy Waxa
SHARING IS CARING: Homeless people have extended this garden so others can benefit. Picture: Cindy Waxa

Danny's Diary: StreetScapes goes from strength to strength

By Danny Oosthuizen Time of article published Nov 13, 2018

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This is going to be a very intense week for me. We have been invited to the SA Police Services’ Public Imbizo.

It will be the first time that homeless people attend this gathering. It was made possible by Denver Venketsamy from the Cape Town Central Police Station.

I’ve always said that positive dialogue and networking can take place. And it is about time that we hear everyone’s views.

On another matter - StreetScapes has grown over the past few months in terms of projects aiming to better the lives of the homeless.

More gardens opened and the Green Market initiative in collaboration with the CCID is so productive there is now a waiting list.

People have come out of their own accord, looking to link up with the programme.

Human beings are funny. We hate change, even though we advocate for it on every street corner.

We’re set in our ways. What we don’t know or understand scares us. We subconsciously declare the death sentence for every mouse, rat, spider and cockroach on Earth. The clever people call it a phobia.

For Hindu people a cow is sacred. Some of us cannot imagine a BBQ without a succulent steak.

Muslims don’t eat pork. So there goes my bacon and egg for breakfast. Let’s glide right past the vegans for now. Why is it that I have to be considerate towards people’s beliefs and choices and put my own wants and needs on the backburner? Why are many of us so judgmental with ourselves?

Look at the heroin user vs the crystal meth user. We even have names for each other. Tik Kop, Hunga Kop, Dope Head, the list goes on.

To patronise myself. I blame it on the fact that I was born under a certain constellation, with planets and moons at war.

My addictive personality is just that. I can go ape when I see a person starting off using drugs. Because deep in my soul I know the danger zones.

Not many can live it to tell the tale. I noticed recently how many places that work with the homeless have all these decor magazines lying around.

Perfect kitchens, manicured lawns, you name it. And everything is in its place. Do people really live such sterile lives? Nothing out of place. A far cry from my little cardboard box underneath the bridge.

* Danny Oosthuizen is the #TheDignityProject ambassador. In his weekly daily column for the Cape Argus, he tackles the struggles homeless people face. Connect with Danny on Facebook and on Twitter @masekind3213 or via email: [email protected]

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.

Cape Argus

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