HOMELESS FEAR STEEP SHELTER PAYMENTS
By: Ntokozo Msane
Shelters for the homeless are no longer trusted because of the fear that they are allegedly driven by greed and forcing the needy to squabble every day for money to get in the shelters.
“Homeless people at the Oasis shelter owned by a lady known only as Michelle, pay R25 a night for a bed.” said Bongani Dlamini, a security guard at the shelter.
According to Tsepo Mapena a car wash owner next to the shelter, the shelter accommodates up to 50 people at most, this could earn the owner R1 250 a day.
Richard Meyer, who is disabled elderly man, said that he sets aside R700 for the shelter monthly.
“After I pay the shelter for the month I need to try and find means of getting money to buy food throughout the month,” Meyer said.
For Eric Nel, who also depends on the shelter for accommodation, it is tougher for him because he needs to go out and make money for the shelter everyday as well as getting
something to eat.
“For me it is even harder because I have no money that comes to me monthly, I need tohustle for food and the R25 and if I do not have it then I’m on the streets,” added Nel.
According to Dlamini, the homeless really do have it hard because they are not permitted to wash their clothes at the shelter.
At the entrance of the shelter there are signs and rules of the shelter, one sign clearly reads, ‘CASH ONLY. NO CASH NO ENTRY.’
Michelle says, “I only wanted to help the homeless and there is not much I can do in terms of food, however there are church feeding schemes.”
“The shelter runs every day from 4pm till 10pm and by 8am the following day everybody needs to be out so that the shelter can be cleaned and ready for the afternoon,” added