Community and Charity

City steps up its efforts to empower female housing beneficiaries

More than 350 female beneficiaries of new housing opportunities have taken part in the City’s housing consumer education (HCE) training during August 2014.

The HCE training, conducted by 13 female trainers from various City directorates, focused on the responsibilities of home ownership, sanitation issues, the management of wills and inheritance, environmental safety and the optimal use of water and electricity, amongst others.

‘So many of our residents were prohibited from owning an asset in the past. Educating beneficiaries of new housing opportunities – especially female-headed households – about what it means to be an owner and the responsibilities that come with that, is absolutely vital to achieve real empowerment and transformation. Ownership is possibly one of the greatest methods to bring redress to our residents as it unlocks economic potential,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements, Councillor Siyabulela Mamkeli.

The participants, who came from all over the city, are recipients of new housing opportunities in various areas – including Pelican Park, Witsand, Masiphumelele, Kanonkop, Makhaza and Belhar.

As part of their HCE training, the participants also receive heat-retaining ‘Wonderbags’ from the City’s Electricity Services Department, which aid in saving electricity. Wonderbags are slow-cooking insulated bags made out of fabric that is lined with polystyrene granules that retain heat. Food is cooked for just 10 to 15 minutes on a stove and then put in the bag where it cooks slowly for several hours using no electricity, gas, paraffin or wood. These bags can also be used as temporary coolers for up to 12 hours to store cold products.

‘While training is conducted regularly, it was decided to concentrate on women during the month of August as a tribute to their role in the struggle for democracy and also in recognition of the role they play in the success of a family,’ said Councillor Mamkeli.