Tunatazama - Community Monitors

Vukuzenzele association in Ekurhuleni

Vukuzenzele is association of people living with disability in Ekurhuleni in the Eastrand. They having 62 members most of them on will chair. Vukuzenzele means (wake up and do things for yourself). They situated in Thembalikazulu primary school.
The association was formed in 1987 registered in 1997. the place that they meeting its a four room house which is very small for them, some members cannot attend because of the space. They meet from Monday to Friday and no food is provided they bring their on own food use their own transport. The question is why?, Dolly the spoke person which is disabled as well told me that they have been applying for funding or grant for five years and the social department told them that they only fund one association in area, they did not explain how the area is divided, secondly the department said the is an association that they fund in Kwatsadutsa which is called DPKT when they went to find out about the association it was closed in 2011 it does not exist any more, they went back to department with a positive hope they were turned down again, They wrote a petition to the social department complaining of the following about funding they did not get any response till today.
The people living with disability are facing the following problems in life.1; The transport system is not suitable for the eg if you are in a wheel chair you cant use a taxi unless the taxi driver is Samaterian same with buses so the public transport in South Africa does not cater for them.2; Housing, the houses they live its not suitable for them when they want get inside the house or get out its difficult if he or she live alone, the toilets are not right for them. These problems make it difficult for them live or perform projects for them in order to make a living.3; Employment, they are still not really considered for employment as well very few are employed, These issues are really disturbing.Paulina who is now 56years applied for a house in 1994 and in 2011 she was told that the is built in ext 19 and when she went the some already occupied the house and have papers of the house and she went to the housing department to find out she could not get a satisfying answer till today. i decided to take the up and went to housing in Alberton in voortreker street in Narvada building we spoke with Themab Nhlapho and we discovered the house indeed belong to Paulina who is disabled as well, Themba is investigating the matter and we indicated to him that its difficult for Paulina to come so he must communicate with me regarding the issue of her house. This matter is showing us that how difficult is for people living with disability to challenge issues that trouble them.
The are no funders they get at all, the only project they do is from company called Crab tree and get R300.00 which is very little.
Social workers were approach for assistance and i got a positive response we had a meeting with them and association on 17th 05 2013 all the problems were put on the table and its a process that will be followed to try and bring a change in all the people living with disability. i hope and believe that this process will produce good results