By Cuma Pantshwa

  • April witnessed a significant milestone in Buffalo City Municipality, particularly for Ncera Village residents, as Minister of Social Development, Ms Lindiwe Zulu, inaugurated the Information Resource Centre, a borehole, water storage tanks, and a solar-powered water pump.
  • This Ministerial Outreach Programme, in collaboration with the Department of Social Development, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and Isithembiso Multipurpose Organisation, aims to provide water access to neighbouring villages, reducing the risk women and children face while fetching water.
  • Minister Zulu expressed gratitude to partners and donors for their contributions towards the Ncera Information Resource Centre, emphasising its potential to enhance education and knowledge among children, echoing the sentiments of the late Nelson Mandela on the transformative power of education.

April marked yet another important chapter in the lives of Buffalo City Municipality, particularly Ncera Village residents, as the Minister of Social Development, Ms Lindiwe Zulu handed over the Information Resource Centre, a borehole, water storage tanks and solar-powered water pump. 

This initiative was part of the Ministerial Outreach Programme, a collaborative effort between the Department of Social Development, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and Isithembiso Multipurpose Organisation. It aims to benefit neighbouring villages by providing access to water, thereby enabling women and children to fetch water without having to risk their lives by traveling long distances where they could be kidnapped or face the risk of gender-based violence. It is essential to note the powerful role that churches play in our society. They remain noted as unifiers and one of the most important institutions that provide hope to the hopeless.

During the celebratory occasion and public engagement, Minister Zulu thanked the partners who travelled on this journey and those who donated towards the centre.

“I hope Ncera Information Resource Centre will provide another opportunity for children of this area and surrounding villages to read books and have more knowledge, and that they will learn that reading is fun,” said Minister Zulu. 

The centre, which now comprises of a community library, was donated by the Turkish Cooperation Coordination Agency (TİKA). The interactive screens and laptops sponsored by the MTN Foundation aim to empower the youth of Ncera and surrounding villages. 

“This project, similar to the Duncan Village facility donated to the Ihlumelelo Foundation, emphasises the importance of education for our young children. Education is, needless to say, one of the most important sectors for the socio-economic development of our country,” said Minister Lindiwe Zulu.

During the public engagement programme, Minister Zulu also handed over a cheque from the National Development Agency (NDA), an entity of the Department of Social Development, to Isithembiso Multi-Purpose Organisation to aid in its efforts to support its women-led agricultural and sustainable livelihood projects. 

In closing, Minister Zulu quoted the Father of the nation, uTata, Nelson Mandela, who said, “Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine,that a child of farm workers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.”


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