A Bonteheuwel family are appealing to the community for help after they lost their home to a fire.
Fumes woke the family of four just after midnight on Tuesday July 28, and flames quickly engulfed their Bessie Avenue wendy house.
According to Letania Postmanat, her cousin Mariam Ariefdien’s family have no electricity and use a candle at night. The candle fell over and caused the fire that destroyed all their belongings, including clothing, food and furniture.
No one was injured, but the family were devastated, Ms Postmanat said.”They’ve lost everything and now they need to start over. The community has been a great help; they’ve offered food when they had nothing to eat and they continue to support them. They are appealing to the public to help rebuild their lives.”
She applauded the City of Cape Town and the fire brigade for their speedy response and readiness to help.
“The City helped to clean up the mess and took all the rubble away,” she said. “They also said that they would possibly get us a new wendy house, and the fire brigade was here in 10 minutes. The ward councillor has also been very helpful.”
Charlotte Powell, the City’s disaster risk management spokeswoman, said a request for assistance was forwarded to the South African Social Security Agency and the City was awaiting feedback.
Jermaine Carelse, spokesman for the City’s Fire and Rescue Service, said crews from Epping and Goodwood fire stations had extinguished the fire by 12.39am.
Ward councillor Angus McKenzie said it was Bonteheuwel’s second fire for the year. He appealed to the public to help the family.
“This was devastating news that this young mother and her children lost their home and everything in it. We are appealing to the people of Bonteheuwel and across the City to open up their hearts and assist the family.
“We have already received a number of donations, and we are hoping to receive more for them so that they can get back up on their feet as quickly as possible.”
The public should take extra care with candles and gas tanks during winter, he said.
“There are basic things that can be done like placing water in a half-cut two-litre bottle so that if the candle falls over it falls into the water. We must make sure that we keep our homes and children safe during this winter period,” he said.