Company helps fire victim with new motorbike
Christmas came early for a Pretoria shack dweller when he received a brand new motorbike after his was destroyed in a fire at the Woodlane informal settlement.
Chengetai Chauke, 26, a casual worker, received the new motorbike from Honda Kyalami, in Johannesburg, on Wednesday afternoon after the company heard of his plight.
Chauke wept inconsolably on Tuesday morning when he realised that the fire had destroyed his first ever motorbike, Beeld newspaper reported.
Ten shacks, Chauke’s among them, burnt down when a gas stove fell over.
Chauke said he paid R3,350 for his motorbike and had been working to fix it up and make it roadworthy.
He had aimed to get his driver’s license, and possibly use it as a path to employment.
Dave Cohen, a DJ who recently bought a Honda motorbike, read the story online and was touched.
“I had to scrimp and save for my bike. When I read that story, I related to it. The man intended on making a living and get himself started,” he said.
Cohen approached Honda SA with Chauke’s story. Honda Kyalami reacted by offering to sponsor a new bike for Chauke.
“It’s a small motorcycle [125cc] to us, but it can make a big difference to someone else,” said owner Craig Langton.
Langton said the company would also sponsor the bike’s licence and registration, and would cover its maintenance for two years.
It would also sponsor the training of Chauke to ensure he could ride a motorcycle.
“We hope that this will enable Chengetai to get back on his feet and we also hope that he will soon find employment,” Langton said.
Chauke also received motorbike gear and a helmet from TRP Distributors.
“I can’t believe that I am getting a new bike,” said Chauke.
“I am truly grateful to Honda Kyalami and their suppliers for their kindness.”
Tswelopele, a non-governmental organisation which has been working with the Woodlane community over several years, had received many donations from the public for Chauke and the community.
“It is marvellous. The response we’ve had is absolutely amazing,” said Tswelopele treasurer, Colin Dredge.