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LIMPOPO MIRROR

23 December 2016 9

“Your skill is your employer” To start afresh in a new country is no easy task, especially if you have no funds to start you off. A father of three from Zimbabwe, however, proved that a bit of initiative and a lot of hard work will take you a long way. Back in 2013 the economic situation in his home country, Zimbabwe, was not the best, to put it mildly. When the 53-year-old resident of Masvingo heard more stories of the glittering gold in Mzansi, Tias Godlho decided to trek down south. When he arrived in Sibasa. Much to his dismay, he found that life was not much different from back home. There were no job opportunities as promised by others who had portrayed South Africa as a land of milk and honey. “After my arrival, I moved around hoping to get a job,

but could not get one. Out of frustration and despair I sat down and nearly thought of going back home in Zimbabwe. I did not have money and that is when it clocked in my mind that am sitting on a treasure as I could carve anything from wooden spoons, knives, dusters and brooms from reeds. I started immediately and the rest is history,” he said. Godlho believes that part of his success came about from making his products easily accessible and affordable. “I don’t charge that much and this makes business sense for me. To tell you the truth, I have never gone to bed hungry since I started. I make enough money that I even send something back to my family in Zimbabwe,” he said. His words of advice for those with skills are not to sit down and wait for employment. “Your skills are your employer and if one does it on a large scale, this could also create jobs for others,” he said. Asnath Madzhie, who is Godlho’s regular customer, praised the hard-working sculptor, saying his works are unique in many respects. “This man has proved that no one needs to sleep on an empty stomach in this country. We have all that is needed to sustain ourselves in this country and there is no excuse for turning to crime for a living. I always buy my brooms from him and I will support him because he is a good example in the community,” she said.

Mvelaphanda’s little ones graduate The little ones of Mvelaphanda Community Crèche at Tshiozwi recenty “graduated” and they are ready for the “big school” next year.

Wooden spoons bring food on the table for Godlho. He urged others not to sit down and lament, but to stand up and do something to improve themselves.

HIV/AIDS education for pensioners By Ndivhuwo Musetha The Department of Health and Social Development in the province will start with an HIV/ Aids-awareness campaign for the elderly next year. This was revealed by the MEC for the department, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, during an exclusive interview with Limpopo Mirror last week during World Aids Day celebrations. Ramathuba said the department came up with the idea after concerns raised by elderly people, especially grannies, during a pensioners’ parliamentary sitting, held at the Ngoako Ramathlodi Sports Complex in Seshego a few months ago. “During that sitting, grannies said they were concerned that we were leaving them behind in our HIV/Aids programmes. The grannies said they wanted to attend workshops about this deadly disease, so that they can know more about it as they are always exposed to it.” Ramathuba added that some of the grannies said that they looked after their grandchildren who had been orphaned by this deadly disease. “They said some of the orphaned children were also HIV positive and they, the grannies, did not know how to look after them. As a result, some of these grannies ended up being infected when they were taking care of the children, like cleaning wounds using their bare hands,” she added. The MEC also mentioned that the grannies said they were also exposed to the disease because they also sometimes became rape victims. She urged all community members to help in correcting the false belief that one can be cured from HIV/Aids by raping children and grannies. She added that there was a need to implement an educational programme that would focus on men who raped grannies and children, thinking that they would be cured from Aids.

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23 December 2016 - Limpopo Mirror