All of us at the ZPSF would like to welcome Johan Schultz our new driver and admin who has finally officially joined our team from the 1st April 2020. Johan has come on board so that we now have a permanent driver as well as someone in the office to assist Linda with all the admin and so on. He has been a silent part of the team for many years helping us on his off days and holidays.
Our second trip for 2020 was completed just before the lockdown in South Africa by Dave Austen and Johan Schultz who did the round trip and Hannes Botha who assisted with the stock purchases and packing of the boxes in Zimbabwe, he also does all the Bulawayo and surround deliveries. A huge thank you to all 3 of you for all your work and effort on this trip during these very scary times. Please enjoy reading the trip report along with some of Dave and Johan’s adventures.
The lockdown caught us for tough one as we had just moved house a week before the trip and I still had no internet access when we got back to SA from Zimbabwe. This has however finally been sorted, so thankful to be able to work as normal. Thank you Nethog!! We are currently preparing for the next trip which we are hoping to start about end the of April 2020 in keeping with our new reduced time frame between the trips. Time will tell and if possible we want to deliver double boxes to everyone as we are not sure what the future holds at this time, at this stage we are just focusing on getting the truck repaired and figuring out the logistics to get the food delivered to our Golden Oldies.
While in Zimbabwe we saw first hand how the whole attitude towards the Corona virus was changing as people were beginning to realise the seriousness of it. As I write this I also realise the irony of it as more than 90% of the population is forced to go on as normal just in order to try and survive, they do not have access to water or power, let alone sanitisers and so on. The enforced quarantine on them is in a lot of cases the equivalent of a death sentence.
After much debate with myself I guess I can write about it now, I don’t know how many of you saw and read about the South African lady who was visiting her family in Bulawayo after seeing her GP who earlier in the week diagnosed the first positive case of Corona in Malelane. This was me, and to cut a really long story short my whole family in Bulawayo was quarantined with me while we waited for the department of infectious diseases to come and swab us. Finally once tested and getting the negative results back we had to wait a few more days and then I was finally given the go-ahead to move around, just in time to come back home. So yes I did go up to Zimbabwe and yes I was planning on doing the round trip, however due to very unforeseen circumstances I basically only got to see the inside of my sisters house.
Unfortunately due to my heart issues, Diabetes and lung issues I am a high risk and as such its safer being locked up. This however is the same for most of our Golden Oldies in Zimbabwe. Most of the homes are not allowing any visitors and some of them just have a total ban on children going in. This makes their isolated existence even more isolated. I am sure most of you are aware the situation in Zimbabwe currently is critical and help is desperately needed by all. The boxes we deliver are a definite mood booster and life saver.
These food hampers serve 2 purpose
1 They supply much needed food to the pensioner.
2 The pensioner then knows that someone cares about them
A small snippet of Thanks we received recently from two of the Golden Oldies we support:
“Peter & Phyllis at Marondera – Dear Friends and Donors,
We are truly overwhelmed by your kindness and generosity in putting together and delivering of our “goodie” boxes. Nothing is easy these days and the hazards on the roads must be quite tiresome for the big truck drivers, but you all keep doing it. Thank you so much!!
We have been receiving your boxes for about 5 years now and each one has been gratefully received, and there is always some little treat inside!! We had to leave our farm about 17 years ago and like everybody lost our livelihood, savings, pension etc…. These boxes keep us going!!!”
Heather at Resthaven Rusape – It is always exciting to receive a parcel from you, as there is often a surprise, something new w rapped inside. As well as the useful everyday necessities.
Thank you all again for caring so much for us Golden Oldies in Zimbabwe.
Due to the damage to the load bin on the UD90 from this last trip we are currently looking into fitting a new one, this will give the truck a new lease on life. We are now looking for a donor or donors to help us with the cost to replace the load bin on the UD90, due to the lockdown we currently do not have a quote for the replacement but from what we have been able to google we are looking at more than R100k. Mechanically the truck is 100%, but due to years of wear and tear on the bin from the lovely Zimbabwe roads we now have to take this drastic step. Please if you do make a contribution towards the repairs on the UD 90 if you can put UD90 alongside your normal reference so that the funds can be correctly allocated. I will also be creating a PayPal account link for the truck repairs.
UD 90 Truck Repair Link – https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=XRV7T22RE3N8W&source=url
Dear Family and Friends,
On an early morning emergency dash to collect supplies I was anxious about venturing out and what I would see. It was Day 5 of Zimbabwe’s 21 day Coronavirus lockdown and I knew that by now people who live hand to mouth and eke out a living selling fruit and vegetables from roadside stalls would be getting desperate. Our taps were dry for the second day running and with gloves and a mask on I set out. People were out looking for water already, so far there was no news on where there were supplies of maize meal, the staple food.
I passed a man pushing a wheelbarrow with five empty yellow water containers, heading towards a public borehole. Fourteen people were already there ahead of him, standing in line at the borehole waiting for their turn to use the hand pump and fill their containers with water. This is coping with Coronavirus Zimbabwe style.
Further along a policewoman in uniform ignored me, she was busy taking a selfie photograph of herself on the side of the road, a block or two from the town centre. She wasn’t wearing a face mask. A group of four police men and women armed with truncheons were having an altercation with a man carrying a small cardboard box. None of the police were wearing face masks despite being a few inches away from the man. This is coping with Coronavirus Zimbabwe style.
All week we’ve been seeing pictures of big crowds of people desperately trying to buy maize meal in Harare and Bulawayo. No chance for social distancing, no sign of masks, just a massive squash of people trying to get food for their families, people who have to choose between hunger and an invisible virus. Almost five hundred people have been arrested this week for being on the streets in breach of lockdown, crammed into police lorries and taken away but in the same week 1680 prisoners have been released because prisons are overcrowded and congested. This is coping with Coronavirus Zimbabwe style.
On Day 5 of Zimbabwe lockdown, news had already filtered out that in the early hours of the morning police had raided Sakubva market in Mutare and confiscated three tons of fresh vegetables which were later set alight. Burning food when the country is in lockdown, people are desperate for food and over half the population is dependent on International Food Aid to survive, is very hard to understand.
Almost home from my early morning dash, two police details were standing in the middle of the road and indicated for me to stop and open my window, asking where I was going and why. The police woman who came to my window wasn’t wearing a mask or gloves and the obvious question that came to mind was: what if she’s got Coronavirus, isn’t she passing it on to every person she stops and questions? Isn’t this making a complete nonsense of lockdown, defeating the whole purpose of confining people to their homes to stop the spread of Covid 19? This is coping, or not, with Coronavirus, Zimbabwe style. God help us.
Until next time, thanks for reading this Letter From Zimbabwe, now in its 20th year, and my books about life in Zimbabwe, love cathy 3 April 2020. Copyright © Cathy Buckle. http://cathybuckle.co.zw/
We have reduced the time frame between the trip to between 5-6 weeks, this means we will be doing 8 instead of the usual 6 trips in 2020. We are also looking at trying to bulk up the boxes so that these aid boxes last longer, however all of this is funds dependent. But we are doing our best and will never give up.
We are an officially registered Non-Profit Organization and Section 21A in South Africa and are registered with SARS as a Public Benefit Organization in terms of section 18A the Income Tax Act (Which means all South African donations are issued with a Tax Certificate and can be claimed back). PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE A TAX CERTIFICATE STATING ALL YOU DONATIONS. PLEASE NOTE THEY ARE ISSUED BASED ON OUR FINANCIAL PERIOD SO THE CURRENT ONES ARE FOR MARCH 2019-FEB 2020. UK supporters can be issued with a Gift Aid Certificate via Betti-Ann McLean and the USA account is now a Registered 501(c)3 organization and as such Tax-deductible receipts available for USA donors via Alice Short.
Please Note for a Tax Certificate I require the following:
- Physical Address
- Contact Number
- If Business – Registered Name, Comp Number
- Private – Initials and correct Surname
Our Various Banking Details:
Our new general PayPal account Link – https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=LN6DPRGAPQ9B2&source=url
UD 90 Truck Repair Link – https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=XRV7T22RE3N8W&source=url
ZIMBABWE PENSIONER SUPPORTER FUND
FIRST NATIONAL BANK
BRANCH CODE 270952
ACCOUNT NUMBER 62239042906
SWIFT CODE FIRNZAJJ
Please if you make a Donation to this account is you can send a mail to myself firstname.lastname@example.org so that I can send you an acknowledgement of Donation.
UK Account – Our NEW UK banking details:
ZIMBABWE PENSIONER SUPPORT FUND
Barclays Bank, West Swindon
Account No: 23398579
Swift Code is:BUKGB22
IBAN is: GB49 BUKB 20681523398579
Please if you make a Donation to this account is you can send a mail to Betiann at email@example.com so that she may send you an acknowledgement of Donation.
ZIMBABWE PENSIONERS SUPPORT FUND – USA
A Registered 501(c)3 organization. TAX-deductible receipts available for USA donors.
Donations via Paypal, use the following link:
USA address to post cheques
3901 Hillwood Way
Bedford TX 76021
To request additional information, or receipts,
email Alice at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Australia Account – Rhodesian Association of Western Australia
Rhodesian Association of WA
P & N Bank
BSB 806 015
Account No. 0181 1882
Please include name and ZPSF in the reference. Acknowledgement will be given in our quarterly newsletter. If a receipt is required, please let Doug know at email@example.com
As a Fund we rely solely on donations to do what we do. We receive no funding from any Government organization. A huge THANK YOU to all our supporters out there who continue to enable us to keep doing what we are doing. Your support is invaluable to us and we at the ZPSF would never be able to sustain our regular supply of relief parcels if it were not for donations such as yours. You our Donors ensure our wheels keep turning, you are all truly amazing. THANK YOU and God Bless.
If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishment toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results. ~Andrew Carnegie
The 3 most important pillars of our cause:
UNIQUENESS – being one of a kind and knowing that the ZPSF is driven by good will and very passionate members.
TRANSPARENCY – enforcing the rule that all members must be fully informed before taking part in this noble venture.
ACCOUNTABILITY – Having a traceable paper trail for every cent handled, and regular revues conducted.
Director – Fund Raising & Awareness for the Zimbabwe Pensioner Support Fund
(C) 079 6082676 (T) 013 7900934
Fax to Email – 086 267 8499
Section 21 Co Reg. 2007/034036/08; NPO Number 096733; Section 18A PBO No 930031642
Alone we can do so little, together we can achieve much more!!!!
Director: Hannes Botha