Written by: Towers of Hope
Article source: JOY! Magazine
Jesus often found Himself in the midst of those who were rejected: the outcasts, those shunned by society. His heart is for the widow, the orphan, the foreigner, the sick, and the lost. Towers of Hope reflects the heart of Jesus by reaching out to the poor and destitute in Bloemfontein. The non-profit organisation’s programmes and projects are divided into five focus areas: Serving, Embracing, Empowering, Living, and Partnering. Anowah Lendoor is a pensioner and one of the many vulnerable people saved by Towers of Hope from a life on the street.
“If the pastor had not helped me, I would have been wandering the streets by now.”
“Before I heard of Towers of Hope, I was looking after my granddaughter’s two little girls during the days. One day a young man and lady came knocking at our flat in the city. They invited me to Towers’ church services and said that they serve cookies and tea afterwards. In addition to the Sunday church services (where I received a meal after the service), I also enjoyed the Wednesday groups. We were mostly older women from the township and really appreciated the food parcels that we received there.
Exploited by family and loan sharks
“Unfortunately, when my granddaughter moved to the township and took us with, I could no longer attend the groups. It was difficult to get to church on Sundays. Sometimes, when I had money, the two girls and I could take a taxi and go to church. The pastor, Rev. De la Harpe, brought us back to the township after each service. He also regularly gave us food parcels. A few months later, my granddaughter left us and went to live in the city, leaving me alone with the girls in the township. Sometimes things were so bad that we did not have money for electricity. I had to get the oldest daughter to school every day and take the little one to a nursery school nearby. I made the big mistake of borrowing money from a loan shark, because we couldn’t make it on my meagre monthly SASSA money. He gave me money in advance, but kept my SASSA card and bank card and withdrew my SASSA money monthly.
“Towers of Hope reflects the heart of Jesus by reaching out to the poor and destitute in Bloemfontein.”
A horrible turn of events
“In desperation, the girls and I had to go to the city and move into the small apartment with my granddaughter and her boyfriend. It was not a great place because they smoked marijuana and used drugs. One day I had to leave the girls alone as I had to go to the shops. On the way back, the girls ran up to me and told me that the flat was on fire! They had been playing with matches because they were alone at home. I lost everything – all of my clothes and my possessions. My granddaughter took me and the little ones back to the township. We had to stay in an outside room on another woman’s property because we did not have money. The roof leaked and
things were very hard. I was very tired.
Towers of Hope intervened
“After reaching out to Towers of Hope, the pastor came to pick us up and took us to a safe haven for women. We stayed there for two months. Towers of Hope also helped me to lay a charge with the police on suspicion that the girls were being molested. The oldest girl has now been placed with a family and the youngest is at a centre for children in the city. The pastor helped me to get a placement for myself in an old age home in Heidedal. I was sad at first, because I wanted to keep the girls with me, but it was not to be. Towers of Hope also helped me to get a new SASSA card and a bank card. They provided me with a wardrobe and new clothes.
‘I do not know what would have become of me’
“I am now settled into this old age home. The church elder comes to fetch me for the service on some Sundays – but unfortunately he can’t come every Sunday. That is not good, because I want to get to the house of the Lord. I feel very happy here. I know the people here, some are now my friends. If the pastor had not helped me, I would have been wandering the streets by now. I do not know what would have become of me. Thank you so much to Towers of Hope and for the pastor!”
Date published: 11/06/2020
Towers Of Hope seeks to develop and manage a variety of processes and interventions whereby vulnerable people can realise, through the grace of God, their God-given dignity. Visit towersofhope.org for more information or call 051 430 4274.
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