The Vryheid branches of AfriForum and Helping Hand plan a joint community centre for this town. It will be first of its kind and the two organisations plan on providing services to the community from this centre.
The branch managements of both organisations are very active in the Vryheid community and the need therefore arose to join forces by establishing a dual-purpose community centre. The location has already been identified and the area will soon be equipped to house the new centre.
“AfriForum wants to live out its mission, which encompasses freedom, safety and prosperity, through the operations that the local branch will offer to its members. Focus areas include local government affairs, safety, environmental affairs and the youth. We plan on focusing on health very soon,” says Eugene van Aswegen, AfriForum’s District Coordinator for KwaZulu-Natal.
“An asset-based approach is much more sustainable to relieve Afrikaner poverty – to therefore start with those who already have and have something to give. Communities have an abundance of possibilities and potential, and the secret is to search for resources and solutions within the community and individuals, and use these. Our aim with this unbelievable community project is to make a tangible difference in the lives of the community in the Vryheid area,” says Mariëtte van Heerden, Solidarity Helping Hand’s Regional Organiser in KwaZulu-Natal.
André van der Walt, Chairperson of Vryheid’s AfriForum branch, is of the opinion that the community centre should be seen as a unifying factor in the Vryheid community, where each and every one takes ownership of this once beautiful town.
“For me it is mostly about a community who has to be empowered to help themselves,” says Riaan du Plooy, Deputy CEO of Solidarity’s Helping Hand. “The answer to every question, as well as the potential and resources, are locked up in each community member. We want to unlock these, join their efforts and mobilise people to make a difference.”
Kallie Kriel, CEO of AfriForum, concludes by saying that he sees the establishing of this community centre as a giant leap in promoting an independent community in Vryheid.