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Jeffreys Bay community rallies together for families in need

2 years ago

After a fire engulfed at least 15 homes in Oceanview, Jeffreys Bay, and destroyed the belongings of at least 40 people on November 14, good Samaritan, Jan van der Merwe, began rallying together much-needed items to help those in need.

Van der Merwe, who works at JH and L Home Improvements, said when he dropped off two of his colleagues at their homes in Oceanview on Monday, November 14, they were informed of the devastating news that their homes were engulfed in flames.

He said, according to bystanders, the fire began at about 15:00 and fortunately there were no lives lost.

Van der Merwe said he quickly realised that it was not only his colleagues’ homes that were damaged by the fire, but at least 15 informal settlements and RDP houses.

“When we arrived, we saw how many people were affected by the fire and I realised that I could not just help my two colleagues. I had to find a way to help the many others who were in need,” said Van der Merwe.

In a bid to get more donations and help from others, he posted about the tragedy and requested for donations on the Jeffreys Bay Online Facebook page.

To his surprise, within a few hours, he received many donations from locals who wanted to help.

“It was unbelievable to see how many people were affected by the fire and it was also remarkable to see how many people in the area were willing to help with donations,” said Van der Merwe.

Despite the many donations that they have received, he said they are still in need of clothing, bedding and furniture.

“People in Jeffreys Bay have the biggest hearts, which is something I have never seen before,” said Van der Merwe.

“I cannot thank the residents enough for the donations they have given. It is so amazing to see what they have done for these people who have lost everything.”

For more information or to donate to the worthy cause, call Jan on 076 108 2008 or Gert on 079 716 4174.

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