540 blankets keep the big chill at bay

A PLEA by a radio station for aid for the homeless spurred a trustee of Alexander Forbes to provide blankets for the needy in Joburg's city centre.

A PLEA by a radio station for aid for the homeless spurred a trustee of Alexander Forbes to provide blankets for the needy in Joburg's city centre.

Donray Malabie heard on radio about the plight of the homeless during the latest cold and wet snap. He immediately swung into action by asking Julie Fredericks of the AF Community Trust to do something.

Fredericks went out and bought 540 blankets, which they asked Mama Angel to distribute at the Salvation Army Food Kitchen in Simmonds Street.

"The Salvation Army feeds the hungry and we will give whoever they feed a blanket. The cold snap must be bad for them and we are responding to that need," Malabie said.

Several people told Mama Angel that they depended on the Salvation Army for food.

"My mother died last year and a lady told me to come to the Sally for food and clothing. They help me look after my children and younger siblings," said Mpho Mogomotsi of Soweto.

Fredericks said the trust supported long-term institutions that empower disadvantaged communities.

"We support the disabled, aged, education activists and those involved with women," she said.

Word went out about the largesse and soon dozens of people queued for a meal and a blanket.

"We thank theSowetan and Alexander Forbes and its trust for coming out in this miserable weather to help the poor. The Salvation Army at Simmonds Street blesses these sweet people because the rain could not dampen their spirits," said Shariefa Shaik, the Sally fundraiser.

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