“I DON’T BELIEVE IN AMASSING WEALTH, I BELIEVE IN AMASSING HELP” –VIOMAK.
“The possession we die with is the love we give to the needy and not the material possessions we amass” Viomak.
Zimbabwe is one country that is on the verge of collapse in the world. In light of this sad predicament more than half of the population need social help one way or the other. As per the objectives of Viomak’s project her main target centres for assistance remain focused on the social and political crisis in Zimbabwe. Viomak who is involved in personalised philanthropy is also involved in organizational philanthropy and continues to be a charity and human rights maestro who is on record for receiving a very high number of requests for help ever sent to an individual by Zimbabweans in need of various support and help. Viomak who believes in action after words continues to open her heart and hands to her own suffering community and is well known for despising wrong and for giving back to the suffering masses of Zimbabwe who have been affected by what she is protesting against. She also donates her time to volunteer for the needy through other charitable organisations. Viomak has financially helped and supported various individuals who have approached her for help including HIV positive Zimbabwe men and women and men and women who are victims of domestic violence.
Following corona virus covid19 national lockdown in Zimbabwe, life has become more and more unbearable for many suffering and poverty stricken Zimbabweans and Viomak has seen an influx of desperate cases for help. In May 2019 a well-wisher contacted Viomak and informed her that Chief Mutekedza in Chivhu, Zimbabwe is struggling with helping a lot of needy families in his area many of who are physically challenged and he doesn’t have enough resources to meet all their needs. On behalf of Hope for Zimbabwe Children (HFZC), Viomak spoke to Chief Mutekedza and his wife Abigirl who said there are around 29 very desperate families in their village who are desperate for various help ranging from basic food to wheelchairs. Chief Mutekedza and his wife distribute dried vegetables (mufushwa) and mealie meal to the needy families as per routine. Viomak sent cash donations to Chief Mutekedza and his wife to help them feed the families. Viomak also arranged a visit to Chivhu and some families in need explained face to face their situations and what help they need to Hope for Zimbabwe Children.
During the visit they met Godknows Mucharurega , who is a physically challenged 18 year old male born to visually impaired mother, Leswitter Mucharurega and visually impaired father Jacob Mapengo . The family lives in Charuma village, which is under Chief Mutekedza also referred to as Chief Andrew Zhakata. The family lives in poverty and both parents are unemployed and eke out a living by begging full time, but are currently not going out begging following covid19 lockdown rules. Chief Mutekedza supplements their food supplies but following Covid19 lockdown rules the poverty stricken family’s woes have not only worsened because they cannot attend to their daily begging routines, but also because looking after Godknows is more challenging than before.
Godknows was diagnosed with celebral palsy when he was one year old. He is the eldest in the family of four children comprising of three boys and one girl. The girl 13 years old, Satisfy helps Godknows with feeding and toileting and the family with household chores such as cooking and laundry. Satisfy, who attends a nearby school is in grade 6 and has no disability. Apart from assisting with meeting Godknows’ needs and household chores Satisfy also looks after her visually impaired parents who were born blind. As if this is not enough Satisfy also assists the other siblings with meeting their various needs .These demanding responsibilities add on to her educational needs which she has to meet. Godknows and his family reside on a residential stand allocated to them by the council. The residential stand is under developed as seen in the pictures and videos. There is only a structure for the family to have a roof over their heads. There is no electricity or easily accessible water at the stand so sanitation is a big problem. Godknows’ mother said the family are kindly asking for a wheelchair and pampers for Godknows, clothes, shoes, school uniforms, stationery, text books and groceries for the family. They are also worried about shelter as the house they are living in has no windows. Their long term goal is to finish off building the house. A few weeks after the visit, God knows fell into the fire while his mother was cooking and he was badly burnt and hospitalised. In May 2020, Viomak donated ZW$3000 to the cause and also sent a cash donation for Godknows during hospitalisation. She has continued to support the family who is looking up to her for support and she continues to support this cause.
Clifford Chekai is a physically challenged 7 year old boy staying with his mother. He is the fourth born in a family of. He cannot sit, walk, talk or eat without assistance. His mother ekes out a living through subsistence farming. She is kindly asking for a wheelchair and pampers for Clifford. Oripah Chiwashira is a 20 year old physically challenged female who was born with a right disabled leg. She has been using crlutches since her childhood but has since outgrown the crutches. She lives with her unemployed mother and siblings. She is kindly asking for new crutches as she has outgrown the current ones.Ratidzo Tomu is a physically challenged 35 year old female who was involved in a car accident in 1999 at the age of 24. She lives with her two children. She said the physical challenges hinder her future prospects of being self employed in order to fend for herself and her children but we assured her there is hope as disability doesn’t mean inability. Currently she is struggling to sustain her life and to fend for her children as she has no source of incomes and covid19 has made her situation worse. She wishes to venture into knitting or sewing and she is kindly asking for resources to start such income generating projects as soon as she can. Meanwhile she is struggling with fending for her children and scarcity of food is a big challenge. Mavis is a 46 year old visually impaired female who was not born blind. She suffered from migraines and experienced severe headaches from childhood. At the age of 16 years while in high school she completely lost her sight .She attributes her blindness to the migraine headaches. Mavis does not have a family or children. Her life is sustained through handouts from well wishers such as Chief Mutekedza. She is kindly asking for clothing, groceries and decent accommodation. Munozivei Zidutye is a single 46 year old woman with no family or children. She was born with spina bifida, uses a wheelchair and she lives alone with no one to support her except for chief Mutekedza and his wife. Chief Mutekedza and his wife are doing the best they can for this desperate community and they greatly appreciate the visit and the help provided so far to add on to the needs of the desperate cases. Through Hope for Zimbabwe Children, Viomak has taken the needs of the families on board and is looking forward to assist them in any way she can which includes sourcing wheelchairs and crutches for those who need them . She also hopes that in future they will be able to come up with self help projects that can generate income for the physically challenged as such projects will also empower them to be self sufficient and eradicate their poverty while meeting their health needs. In December 2020 Viomak sent a cash donation to Chief Mutekedza’s wife to buy food hampers for Christmas for 6 families, Godknows’ family, Clifford Chekai , Oripah Chiwashira, Ratidzo Tomu, Mavis and Munozivei Zidutye at ZW$1000 each for sugar, rice, cooking oil, flour, bar soap, washing powder, salt, bath soap, tissue and toothpaste.
In August 2019 sister Chiedza approached Viomak to see if she can assist orphans at Xtreme Trans Children’s home in Damofalls, Zimbabwe . The home was founded by Bishop Edward Muranganwa having seen the suffering of orphaned Zimbabwe children most of who were street children. Viomak spoke to Bishop Muranganwa who said they need help with mainly food items such as maize or mealie meal, rice, sugar, cooking oil, spaghetti, carrots, baked beans, peanut butter, royco soup, dried kapenta fish, beef chunks ,powdered milk, potatoes, vaseline, eggs, salt, snacks, drink, flour, surf, bathing soap, blankets, linen, chairs, benches, tables, toys, stationery, writing and reading books both primary and secondary and clothes. Bishop Muranganwa explained that Xtreme Trans orphanage is a duly registered orphanage that was formed with an aim of uplifting people’s lives, particularly the orphans and underprivileged children and those afflicted by pandemics like HIV and AIDS because they face existential challenges everyday. The children live in an over crowded 2 roomed structure that leaks from above and their blankets get soaked in water when it rains. Bishop Muranganwa struggles to take care of the children and he relies on donations from well wishers. The place in Damofalls caught fire and the homeless children were relocated to Goromonzi. After making cash donations Viomak visited the orphanage in Goromonzi and met Bishop Muranganwa and the 35 children currently being taken care of at the orphanage courtesy of Bishop Muranganwa’s charity work appeals. It is a heartbreaking scenario. The roof leak as well and during the rainy season water gets in the shelter and sanitary is poor. During the visit Bishop Muranganwa added that the children also need kitchen utensils, school fees, soccer kits and better shelter. Viomak donated bags of rice, flour , beef chunks , cabbage, cooking oil, drink, salt, snacks and she also bought the children a goat to slaughter for 2019 Christmas and a further us$50 in cash to bishop Muranganwa to sort out some borehole issue. There are water issues at the place and the work was stopped because Bishop Muranganwa did not have us$50 to foot the bill. Currently the sewer went down after heavy rains and Bishop Muranganwa has no money for construction and repairs. During the visit the children sang songs of joy and were very thankful of the donations despite their sad circumstances.
On 15 December 2005 Viomak donated ZW$15 840 000.00 to Mutemwa Leprosy Care Centre in Mutoko for Christmas groceries. Viomak worked with Faith Chimanda, a volunteer she has not met to ensure the patients have a merry Christmas. Mutemwa Leprosy Care Centre is home to 90 or more patients who have suffered severe deformity and are disabled and destitute .Some have lost limbs and others have been blinded by the disease. Due to the economic crisis resulting from bad governance, a drug as simple as dapsone which treats leprosy and can be administered in a home is hard to come by. Many patients suffer in silence with no hope for better futures and rely on donors like Viomak to assist them lead better lives.>
On 20 July 2006 Viomak donated ZW$90 000 000.00 to New Hope Foundation, now Defence For Children International Zimbabwe, through Elfas Zadzagomo to help with paying school fees, buy uniforms, stationery and text books for orphaned children .Thereafter Viomak made cash donations to the organisation on 4th April 2007, November 2008 and May 2009 to support with the upkeep of children in need. Many of the children are victims of ZanuPF’s operation murambatsvina (Clean the filth) which saw the government destroy people’s houses leaving many destitute and homeless. Through New Hope Foundation Viomak continues to support children affected by operation Murambatsvina which left more than 5000 people homeless. Children who have benefited at Epworth Primary School for one year fees are Emmanuel Manhuwa 10 years, grade four, Amanda Sakubende 9 years, grade two and Monalisa Jose 9 years, grade two. Through New Hope Foundation Viomak has donated to Faith Based Fellowship Zimbabwe’s orphaned sick children under the care of the organisation.
In June 2010 Viomak donated cash for groceries to an orphaned physically challenged 14 year old girl, Laina and orphaned Chitinha twins through Mwana Trust, Mutare. Laina is chronologically aged 14 years 10 months but operates far below her chrological age.Viomak also bought stationery for Laina to support with her educational needs. Laina is an example of how vulnerable physically challenged children are neglected by the government in Zimbabwe. Through an assessment initiated by Mwana Trust it was established that both Laina’s parents are deceased and she is currently staying with her maternal grandmother, Anne aged 86 years who happens to be a widow. Laina who has never attended school, also lives with three cousins and an aunt aged 23 years who help with everyday chores. After her father denied paternity, the mother could not afford hospital fees and general immunization and Laina never developed speech since birth. Laina has good hearing ability but cannot verbally respond meaning her speech has not developed. She vocalizes but can not produce coherent speech. She follows instructions with high accuracy but she has difficulty holding items such as pens which shows poor fine motor skills. Laina’s fine motor skills are at the level of a 0-1 year old child. She can pick up a cup but can neither build a tower of 2 to 6 blocks nor can she fold paper once in imitation. Laina’s relationship skills are at the level of a 2-3 year old child. She can label self-feelings, show desire to please caregiver and follow adult requests about half the time. Her expressive language is at the level of a 0-1 year old. She can wave bye-bye but cannot repeat words asked when asked nor can she imitate environmental sounds. Laina’s receptive language is at the level of a 3-4 year old child. Laina is able to bring objects when they are named, for example pen, and she can point accurately when asked, for example, show me your fingers, eyes and teeth. Laina can correctly answer that she is a girl through nodding her head. Her gross motor skills are at the level of a 1-2 year old child. Laina can not walk but rather crawls around the yard to grab items as in the images, neither can she jump or walk backwards. Laina’s self-help skills are at the level of a 4-5 year old child. Laina can indicate toilet needs, lift a cup and drinks from it and she can also eat using a spoon. The ADLO test indicates that her expressive language is below 1 year old. It was therefore recommended that Laina attend grade 1 as soon as possible so that she can grasp basic skills in reading and maths and at the same time help her to socialize with others. Laina also has to visit a surgeon who will examine her speech organs e.g. tongue, upper and lower pallets to determine her lack of tongue movement and word production. Laina also needs an assistive device in the form of a wheel chair to support her mobility.
Among other voluntary work, in 2009 Viomak volunteered for Facing the world and gave time to the family of a Zimbabwean mother who had travelled to Britain to have facial surgery for his young son Nqobile . The charity organisation provides life-changing craniofacial surgery to disadvantaged and vulnerable children. After reading about the charity appeal for volunteers to help the family in the media, Viomak contacted Facing the World and she travelled to London to offer assistance with translations and company for the mother and son. Viomak continued to be the point of contact between the organisation and the mother until she travelled back to Zimbabwe with her son following the successful surgery.
On 7 May 2008 Viomak donated cash through Kubatana Trust to help opposition MDC-T Mavhoterapapi victims of post election violence of 29 March 2008. Kubatana Trust forwarded the cash to Zimbabwe Peace project who bought blankets for operation mavhoterapapi victims. During the political violence those suspected of voting for opposition MDC-Tsvangirai were terrorised, tortured and murdered by ZanuPF sponsored gangs and many fled their homes and found refuge at MDC-T headquarters offices in Harare. The MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai had meanwhile taken refuge at the Dutch embassy as the violence and threat on his life escalated.
On 20 January 2008 Viomak made a cash donation to Fertility Network Zimbabwe through Evelyn Madziba to support her organisation which was raising awareness on infertility issues and programmes in Zimbabwe. The organisation which aims to fight the stigma against infertility was in need of funds to print materials and Viomak assisted them with a cash donation to print materials to raise awareness.
On 23 May 2006 Viomak donated cash for groceries to Matthew Rusike Children’s home. The home is a haven for some 120 homeless, orphaned, displaced, abandoned and deprived children aged between 3 and 18 years. The home is the brain child of Matthew Rusike, a Zimbabwean who cared for orphans.
Viomak has heeded to Save the Children’s various calls for assistance in disaster stricken areas worldwide and has made online financial contributions to help with supporting children across the globe. She received an appreciation certificate.
Viomak has heeded to United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)’s various calls for assistance in disaster stricken areas worldwide and has made financial contributions to help with providing humanitarian and developmental aid to children worldwide.
Viomak has heeded to Amnesty International Canada’s calls for assistance and has made financial contributions to help the organisation purse its human rights vision.