Vic Falls tourism operators and council partner to build clinic
Leonard Ncube, Victoria Falls Reporter TOURISM operators in Victoria Falls have partnered their local municipality to build a low cost clinic targeting disadvantaged members of the community in the resort town.
Speaking at an event organised by the Hospitality Association of Zimbabwe (HAZ) members for elderly people at Chinotimba Old People’s Home on Friday, Ms Yvonne Jandles said donors for the ambitious project had been identified.
“In 2019 we will be refurbishing a derelict building at the Old People’s Home, which we are going to convert into a small clinic. We are working with the council and we’ve met some of the donors.
“The clinic will cater for those housed at the old people’s home and even the community. We have noticed that these people suffer while seeking medication elsewhere and we want them to be attended here within their premises,” said Ms Jandles on behalf of HAZ.
One of the affected is Gogo Swelakele Maphosa aged 107 who fractured her limb last year in August and is yet to undergo surgery because of lack of funds.
She fell while at the Old People’s Home and tourism players mobilised resources to take her to Livingstone in Zambia as local health institutions could not assist her.
A doctor in Bulawayo has offered to operate on her limb free of charge.
Ms Jandles said the tourism sector would not be deterred from doing corporate social responsibility projects by the prevailing economic situation.
HAZ Victoria Falls chairman, Mr Farai Chimba, who is also Victoria Falls Hotel deputy general manager, said HAZ would also refurbish and furnish the Old People’s Home’s living room.
Besides the buffet meal prepared by Victoria Falls Hotel, the elderly were each handed grocery vouchers and clothes.
Ms Jandles said the Old People’s Home has been a corporate social responsibility project for tourism players for a number of years.
She singled out donations by TM Supermarket which donated a gas stove while international rugby player Tendai Mtawarira donated fans for the living room.
Hotels take turns to refill gas and have put all the 12 elderly people on Nyaradzo Funeral cover.
The Old People’s Home depends on the community’s benevolence.
A year ago the operators under the banner of Hospitality Industry Association (HAZ) Victoria Falls Chapter constructed a shed at Kazungula Border Post after realisation that tourists were spending much time under the direct sun at the facility waiting to be attended to.
The facility eased pressure for self drive tourists as it is being used for immigration procedures.