Plaza opens its heart to the poor

Nthabisang Moreosele

Nthabisang Moreosele

Mama Angel paid a visit to the Oriental Plaza after its Night of a Thousand Blankets promotion.

The promotion is an in-house project in which all the shops in the mall donate in kind to the poor.

The management invited Mama Angel to nominate a charity that will receive some of the goods.

"We collected about R500000 in our annual drive this year," says plaza general manager Mahommed Patel. "The plaza is a sectional title building, so the donations are voluntary.

"We have been running a charity drive for the past 30 years and it is still going strong. We have always believed in social responsibility, in helping hospitals and children.

"What affects the community affects us all and we believe that charity begins at home."

Plaza PRO Fatima Noor is the force behind the project.

"It is a wonderful feeling when people give you money for the needy," Noor says. "It gives me a great feeling to know that I am doing something for the community."

The clothing and blankets have already been donated to more than 10 charities.

Oscar Gunguwo of Rosca was overcome by the generosity of the shopkeepers, especially since the main Rosca House in Roodepoort was recently burnt down mysteriously.

The children are now housed in various small units.

Rosca takes care of children between five and 18 who are affected by HIV-Aids.

It is a mix of orphaned and abandoned children or those whose single parents can no longer care for them.

"We create a homely environment - with surrogate mothers and fathers," Gunguwo said. We teach the children family values and morals, and give them love."