A well known face at the robot on the corner of Victoria road and the N2. I have asked him several times when I stopped at the robot to please come to the Night Shelter where he can sleep in a warm bed and receive food every day. He always told me “No I don’t want to go to the shelter” (he never gave a reason why).
On Monday the 27th of May Ralph came to see me at the shelter and told me “Juffrou ek wil nou maar liewer by die shelter kom bly”. He was taken in and provided with clean clothes, a bed and food to eat.
Ralph also received assistance with his disability grant. He had been on the system as receiving one, but someone had stolen his card and was accessing his money. The next step in helping Ralph would be to visit his family to establish the possibility of reunification – If this is not possible, we need to find a home for Ralph that takes care of disabled adults on a permanent basis.
Ralph will also be taken to the local clinic for a medical evaluation.
There is still a lot to be done but the first steps have been taken and Ralph realises that a life on the streets is not worth living. You may see him again at the traffic light, he still finds comfort in begging, but for now at least is is safe in the shelter at night and not needing to spend the winter in doorways.
Nicolene (Social Worker)