Although the Bridgetown-based Cape Town Association for the Physically Disabled (CTAPD) is in dire need of funds, they won’t allow this setback to stop them from doing what they do best – especially since a group of volunteers formed a fund-raising committee to turn this situation around.
On Saturday June 5, staff and volunteers participated in the Lollipop Campaign, which was hosted at Vangate Mall. Chief executive officer (CEO), Wilfred Diedricks, said this nine-year-old campaign was initiated by the CTAPD’s umbrella body, the Western Cape Association for Persons with Disabilities.
The project involves selling lollipops for R3 each. He admitted that a lot of lollipops needed to be sold to make an impression on their current financial situation, but he is excited about the prospects.
He expressed gratutide to the CTAPD’s fund-raising committee, saying: “I am so appreciative of what they are doing. They are a group of 10 committed people and it is so heartwarming for me to see all the hard work they put in. If it continues like this, we will get back on our feet. However, we still have a lot of work that must be done.”
He remembers going to the Reable Centre in Bridgetown, where the CTAPD is based, as a teenager. He was appointed CEO in December last year.
“This building was erected in 1972 and it now needs a lot of work. During my first weeks here, the neighbours opposite came knocking here to complain that a building next door, which also belongs to us, has been used as a drug den. The neighbours were upset with us, claiming that we allow it. We dealt with that situation successfully, and since then, our neighbours have come here to help. So many of them have extended a helping hand. Bridgetown is taking ownership of CTAPD now,” he said.
Chairperson of the fund-raising committee, Arnold Zietsman, said many people want to contribute positively to their community.
“Some of our team members are students from the University of the Western Cape and the University of Cape Town and despite their hectic schedules, they always make themselves available. Over the past four weeks they have also met every Saturday,” Mr Zietsman said.
Staff member Fatima Martin said the volunteers’ involvement at the centre brings value to the community. We are so grateful for their positive contribution, and we would like to show them our appreciation, but for that, we have to make an appeal to businesses for sponsorship.
“We would like to print T-shirts for them as a token of our appreciation, and hope that we can partner with a business to make this happen. We would also like to thank the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) for sponsoring the cost of the poster to advertise the Lollipop Campaign,” Ms Martin said.
For more information, contact the CTAPD at 021 637 1204.