Walking women win

Soraya Salie, second from right, chairperson of the Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies, welcomed Western Cape MEC for Community Safety, Dan Plato, seated, middle, and many other stakeholders to the official cheque handover programme.

The programme at a cheque handover ceremony of the Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies was so significant, it made stakeholders and fellow organisations realise how much value they add to communities.

So said the chairperson, Soraya Salie, adding that although the club was grateful for the R32500 given to them, the messages and inspiration shared during the ceremony by various speakers, made the event so much more glorious.

MEC for Community Safety, Dan Plato, did the official cheque handover to the Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies for winning the Gold Community Club Award in the provincial government’s Western Cape on Wellness (WoW!) initiative, on Wednesday April 4 at the Bonteheuwel community centre. More than 200 people attended the event.

The club used the money to buy 100 tracksuits for its members, as well as sound equipment and office equipment.

The Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies had won the award in September last year already, but the official cheque handover ceremony only happened on Wednesday April 4.

“I am in awe of the Almighty’s favours upon our club. Over the last few months, our club welcomed 20 new members, and the ladies continue to achieve phenomenal things. Twenty of our members also started food gardens at their homes. We are also blessed that we have collaborators and stakeholders from so many organisations, including the South African Faith and Family Institute (Saffi) and the Cape Cultural Collective, who blessed us with their poetry anthology, called At Thruth’s End, among others,” Ms Salie said.

At the same awards ceremony, the Bonteheuwel Walking Ladies also won the Qhubeka Bicycle.

“We had to write what we will do with the bicycle, should we win it, and we said we would motivate youngsters to ride a bicycle, by letting our pensioners ride the bicycle to the various schools,” Ms Salie said.

The Western Cape Health Department’s WoW! programme helps people to make healthy lifestyle choices throughout their lives.

Ms Salie and fellow member, Carmen Steyn, are the club’s Wow! Champions – these are peer leaders who establish and maintain a WoW! Club in their areas. WoW! participants complete a confidential health and fitness assessment and a brief questionnaire about their physical activity, healthy eating and habits, including smoking and alcohol use. The assessment measures include height, weight, waist circumference, body mass index (BMI) and a fitness test.