Thorngrove Infectious Diseases Hospital – which is the designated isolation centre in Matabeleland for all COVID-19 related cases – received a shot in the arm after some organisations in the city donated various goods to the health institution.
The city council-run health institution received food consignment from Thuthuka Matabeleland Trust, surgical masks from an initiative called Bulawayo Babies while Chloride Zimbabwe will install solar power at the isolation ward.
Chloride Regional Sales Manager for Matabeleland, Rudo Rwasheshiringo, said from the initial assessment, an estimated US$20 000 would be required to install the solar system.
Rainbow Hotel also donated 300 second-hand linen including sheets and towels.
Accepting the donations, Tuesday, Bulawayo Mayor, Councillor Solomon Mguni, said it was fortunate that the city had not yet recorded a single case of the deadly pandemic so far.
“As of Tuesday, Bulawayo has no positive cases of COVID-19,” he said and urged residents to unite and cooperate with authorities.
The mayor expressed gratitude to the various stakeholders and called for concerted efforts in the fight against COVID-19.
“I am humbled to receive this donation, as it reflects the concern you have shown and the steps you are taking to mitigate impacts likely to be caused by the coronavirus. As policymakers, we receive daily updates and as of yesterday, Bulawayo has no cases of people who have tested positive. We are grateful to God because it can only God who is sparing us otherwise we could be hard hit,” he said.
The mayor said fighting COVID-19 required everyone to work as a team including mobilising resources.
“I want to thank the residents for heeding the president’s proclamation to stay at home and prevent contamination. This is a time for us to be united, it’s not a time for blaming each other or name-calling. We must continue cooperating with authorities and our health personnel. I also thank those who have invested resources and when all is said and done, let it be said that the virus didn’t hit Bulawayo through the protection of God. The city was built on the foundation of prayer and must remain unscathed,” said Cllr Mguni.
Dakamela Ncube from Thuthuka Matabeleland Trust noted that there was a lot of misconception concerning the virus and that Thorngrove was an appropriate infectious site.
“The trust was founded in 2019 and registered as a trust by individuals from Matabeleland North and South. We aim to develop people and encourage them to take initiative. We do identify areas of need and when we heard of COVID-19 and the calls of help that came from the government and city council, we came together to contribute something,” he said.
Ncube noted that anyone could find themselves admitted at Thorngrove, which was why it was necessary to lend assistance to the centre.
“We mobilised funds and organised with OK Mart to package groceries that we could present to the city council. The donation may not be much but it’s a way of encouraging society to not give a blind eye. Often there is this mentality that people will see for themselves but we urge people to make a difference. Anyone can be admitted here, including myself, you and our neighbours which is why must offer assistance where we can,” he said.
Thorngrove’s Isolation Ward has a carrying capacity of 30 to 40 beds.