Spread warmth with a spare hand ‒ or rand during these tough times
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Johannesburg - Yesterday was the coldest day this winter. The pundits are now telling us that 2021 is on track to be the coldest year in the last 11. It’s another cross to bear in a year that has brought with it lockdowns, looting, a tsunami of Covid-19 infections and, last week, an abortive coup d’état.
But this is South Africa; misery loves company and, as if on cue, Eskom announced a quick series of load shedding, rolling power cuts that, thanks to our municipalities, often continue far longer than intended. The winter will pass, replaced by spring and the prospect of renewal ‒ literally with the scheduled municipal elections no longer feasible in October, but any time before the end of summer, according to Deputy Chief Justice-emeritus Dikgang Moseneke.
Before this winter of discontent does pass though, many will bear its brunt; hungry, hopeless and powerless – literally and figuratively. Adversity always brings out the best of us as a nation. We saw that last week, but we need more. Covid-19 has exposed and worsened the divides in our society; many who were once relatively privileged are in penury. Job losses are the highest in recent history, as the mercury plummets to its lowest over much the same period.
Irrespective of however badly we feel we have fared over the last 16 months, let’s think of those who are truly in need, without a roof over their head, warm food in their bellies or even a blanket at night.
We are blessed with an incredible amount of charities doing great work. If you can’t do something tangible on your own because you don’t have the time or don’t know how, reach out to some of the people who are doing it already. They can always use a spare hand – or a spare rand.