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Gospel star Deborah Fraser turns Mother Teresa to hungry fellow artists

Debra Fraser has been lending a helpful hand to other artists
Debra Fraser has been lending a helpful hand to other artists
Image: Supplied

Gospel star Deborah “Debra” Fraser has proved to be a true Mother Teresa of the music industry when she organised food parcels for artists.

Fraser, who has been showing her kindness and generosity by sharing vegetables from her own farm with artists, has donated about 100 food parcels to artists with the help of Bishop David Ramela of St Paul African Church. The handing over of the food parcels took place in Newtown, Johannesburg, where people had to brave the chill.

Some of the artists who benefited included Omama Besxaxa, Vicky Vilakazi, Buselaphi Gxowa, Khululiwe Sithole, Nkululeko Khanye, Buhle Nhlangulela, Patricia Majalisa, Phila Madlingozi, Phumi Maduna and Dumza Khanyile.

Speaking to SowetanLive, Fraser said she approached Bishop Ramela after knocking in many doors in the Gauteng municipality without success. She said the idea to help started when the national lockdown began at the end of March.

“I started by creating a database of artists in South Africa and I had about 300. Since then I have been supporting some of them with vegetables from my farm. And when we slaughter something, I also share the meat with them. But I realised that it was not enough, I needed to do something to assist the artists.

“After approaching the bishop, he came back to me saying he can help with food parcels for 100 people. I was surprised myself when I saw the size and volumes of food he organised for artists. I have never seen a food parcel during this Covid-19 that is accompanied by a cold drink. I want to thank him for helping the artists because the situation was really bad.”

Gospel singer Vicky Vilakazi said Fraser has set a good example to artists that they should not always expect to receive but also to give to others.

“When you are giving artists something you are not giving to that artist alone, you are giving to a community. Artists are bread-winners too and behind them they are carrying families, not only immediate families, but extended families. What Debra did was good work of kindness.”

Maskandi singer Buselaphi Gxowa, who is among the people who benefited, could not stop praising Fraser and Ramela.

“The grocery we received is making a big difference to me and my family. I want to thank Sis Debra and the bishop for thinking about us. I also want to thank Mam Bathabile Dlamini who has organized vouchers for artists to buy groceries.”

Nkululeko Khanye said: “We are grateful for Debra Fraser for such love and caring for us. The food parcels are going to sustaine us. It’s very good for all artists as we don't have any income during this lockdown. 

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story, SowetanLIVE erroneously mentioned the name of Dumza Maswana as one of the beneficiaries of Debra Fraser's food parcel drive and used his picture to accompany the story. Sowetan apologises  for the error and the inconvenience caused. The story has been updated to correct this.

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