Cape Town – Having been in coma for a week and declared brain dead in 2015, Kalib Missoe knows all about life-and-death struggles.
Turning 21 tomorrow, he has once more risen to the occasion to assist the Belhar community in their daily struggle for survival.
The Covid-19 lockdown has unleashed a humanitarian crisis affecting millions in the country. Kalib was ironically destined to go and study sports management in China this year, but Belhar residents will be grateful he decided to remain on the Cape Flats to serve the community in these desperate times.
An NPO that came into being in February, the National Youth Development League, which he launched, is trying to feed as many people as possible on a daily basis. Kalib is the executive director, his mother Esmaralda, who works in banking, the treasurer and Zachary van Wyk the secretary.
Similarly to many other NPOs and other organisations on the Cape Flats, getting assistance from the powers-that-be is hard to come by or non-existent.
On Saturday, for example, they dropped off two loaves of brown bread at around 300 households in the Belhar area, feeding more than 250 children in the process.
“We are trying to do it daily but we need support because we are basically doing it out of our own pockets at the moment.
” The first donations we got was from Disaster Risk Management and Jive, consisting of 350 loaves of brown bread and five crates of 2-litre Jive bottles. The ward councillors are basically only assisting selected NPOs and people.
“But I am not going to give up. There are so many people in Belhar, there will always be someone that you can’t feed.
“I will fight for their rights and assist them. I didn’t give up during the time I was in a coma and declared brain dead after a rugby accident.
“There are so many kids that are really struggling. Every time my mother and I distribute food, they are so overjoyed because they seem to be getting their first meal of the day. Even adults can’t say thank you enough.
“One thing I really don’t understand are the Sassa requirements. I find it strange that pensioners and people who get disability grants don’t qualify for Sassa food parcels.
“The reality of the situation is ignored because many pensioners and grandmas are having to look after their grandchildren. So a grandma ends up having to buy nappies and so much more with that R1 760 a month. How can you say they don’t qualify?”
Food is not the only sustance Kalib can provide. The near-death experience has strengthened his faith in God and he is able to bolster the spiritual resilience of the needy and youth.
“Maybe the coronavirus is a way for God to tell people that he exists and that they should have faith in him because I think He is the only cure for the virus. You can get a cure now for this virus, but it can come again in another form.”
When the lockdown ends, Kalib’s NPO will be upskilling the youth as he believes there is so much talent that needs to be unearthed.
With his rugby injury having ended his playing days, he is a qualified WP Rugby Football Association referee and an administrator and a coach at a club.
Money can be deposited in the following account to assist the National Youth Development League in feeding the Belhar community.
Branch no: 10391000
Account name: National Youth Development League
Type of account: Business
Address: 13 Da Gama Crescent, Belhar.
Contact: Kalib Missoe 067 068 2880
By Staff Writer