Cape Shack Fires: DSD teams on the ground providing social relief
The Western Cape Minister of Social Development, Adv. Albert Fritz, will visit the scene of the devastating fire in Masiphumelele, outside Cape Town.
The fire claimed two lives of a middle-aged couple, and is estimated to have destroyed 1000 structures displacing nearly 4000 people. This makes it one of the worst fire incidents this year.
Of greatest concern is the seeming rise in the number and severity of incidents of fires at informal settlements. The Department of Social Development (DSD), through our Social Relief of Distress (SRD) programme, has this past weekend alone responded to three other fire incidents in;
- Nkanini, which saw 56 shacks destroyed,
- Joe Slovo informal settlement, which saw 125 shacks and 500 people displaced,
- and in Bloekombos, which saw one dwelling destroyed.
The department has dispatched social workers to provide trauma counselling, especially to the relatives of the deceased. The SRD team in conjunction with our funded disaster NGO partners, such as Mustadafin, the Red Cross, and religious institutions, are on the ground assessing needs and rendering much-needed relief services.
We are appealing to the public to assist by donating what they can (clothing, personal hygiene items etc.) to our teams on the ground. The public can contact our NGO partner Merci Net on 072 345 3939 (contact person: Marti) or the DSD hotline on 0800 220 250.
Spokesperson for Albert Fritz, Minister of Social Development
Western Cape Government
7th floor, 14 Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town, 8000
Tel : (021) 483 9217
Cell : 076 083 6543
Email : Sihle.Ngobese@westerncape.gov.za