Community developers honoured with awards

Nomsa Maskeo with award recipient Andrea Dondolo and Luvuyo Rani's representative Bongiwe Beja.

Khayelitsha’s light continues to shine.

The township has numerous trend-setters and three of them were acknowledged for their contribution to society at the Khayelitsha Prestige Awards on Saturday June 2.

The who’s who of the community attended the event at the Salvation Church of Revival of Faith in Makhaza.

Kingdom Edify, the social development wing of the Salvation Church, announced the winners in a glittering ceremony attended by 500 people including television stars from around the country.

Khayelitsha entrepreneur Luvuyo Rani; actress, storyteller and managing director of Calabash Storytellers, Andrea Dondolo; and young entrepreneur and founder of the Makhaza Lifestyle, Siyabulela Sophila were the winners of the newly formed awards.

Fourteen years since he started his computer business from the boot of his car, in Khayelitsha, Mr Rani was recognised for his role as a social entrepreneur.

Mr Rani ventured into the world of business while he was an accounting and business teacher at Kwamfundo Secondary School in 2004.

He could not attend the ceremony to accept the award himself as he is currently attending a learnership at Harvard University in America.

A cultural activist, poet, writer, storyteller and award-winning actress, Ms Dondolo said she will cherish the day. Speaking to the media after receiving the accolade, she said she was delighted.

“This is unbelievable. I am honoured and humbled and am grateful this little light of mine shines bright. It is not everyday that one is honoured by his or her own people. I’m so thankful and appreciative to everyone around me, everyone who has been true to me like Zikhona Sodlaka and Linda Sokhulu and that is why I came with them here. These are women of substance, who know the struggle of women in our industry. It is important to lead, no matter from the back or front, just lead. Thanks to everyone who has been by my side and those who are behind this great initiative. We all have a role to play in our society. To Apostle Khaya Maseko and his team, I say God speed.”

Ms Dondolo is currently part of the popular telenovela, The Queen, as Bongi, the sister of Brutus who is played by veteran actor, Themba Ndaba.

The young Mr Sophila said he was thankful to get a “surprise award” and he is looking forward to many years of working in Khayelitsha.

The brains behind the awards, Dr Apostle Khaya Maseko, said they were building a city within a city. “Khayelitsha is arguably the second largest township in the country and yet it has no awards. That is uncalled for. Khayelitsha vuka (wake up). Let us help push each other. In spite of all odds, these people did extremely well. The truth is we are not in Cape Town, just camping out in it. So we are saying, let us build a city within a the city. We honour these people that we believe are our ambassadors.”