from DION HENRICK in Cape Town
CAPE TOWN, (CAJ News) – STELLENBOSCH Football Club, the Absa Premiership newbies, are playing a lifesaving role in local communities hardest hit by the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown.
This as the Western Cape Province escalates as the epicentre of the killer virus.
The intervention by Stellies, formerly Vasco da Gama, has mainly been through feeding schemes mostly in the townships that are bearing the brunt of the lockdown imposed by the national government late in March.
Western Cape, of which Stellenbosch is a part, has since degenerated into the Achilles heel of the fight against the health crisis that has left more than 500 people dead from over 24 200 confirmed cases countrywide.
The province has more than 65 percent of the total caseload, much to the concern of government, and the Premiership newcomers.
“We have to support the local community as much as we can, especially during this uncertainty and unprecedented time,” José Cabral, the StellenboschYouth Academy Manager, said in an interview with CAJ News Africa.
He was speaking at the township of Kayamandi where he led a feeding scheme.
Academy youth coaches and their starlets participated in the soup and bread distribution exercise.
Impoverished areas around Stellenbosch, including Cloetesville, Idas Valley, James Town and Vlottenberg have also benefitted from the Stellies’ philanthropy.
“We have been distributing over 2 000 meals every day, from Monday to Friday, in different locations around Stellenbosch. We have been busy since the start of the lockdown,” Cabral said.
The Cape Winelands-based side is occupying 11th position on the log but the lockdown-enforced recess has halted its maiden season in the top flight.
The gesture by Stellenbosch during the COVID-19 lockdown coincides with the goodwill of its proprietor, Johann Rupert, who owns the side through his Remgro Limited.
At the start of the lockdown, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced Rupert had donated R1 billion to assist small business and their workers affected by the restrictions.
– CAJ News