Small-scale and Interim Relief Fishers to Benefit from Donation of Masks
CAPE TOWN: A donation of 4800 masks has been handed over to the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries’ (DEFF) Small-Scale Fisheries Directorate by the South African Fisheries Development Fund to protect small-scale and interim relief fishers in the Western and Northern Cape fishing communities from the Covid-19 pandemic. The handover took place at DEFF’s offices in Cape Town on Tuesday, 2 June.
Fund Chief Executive Officer, Dr Mark Botha, says, “The Fund’s mandate is to contribute towards the economic advancement and wellbeing of fishers in local fishing communities. Our donation of these 4800 masks, manufactured in line with the necessary specifications by House of Monatic, is, therefore, just another way in which we are trying to support these fishers. It follows the donation of food parcels by the Fund to rural fishing communities across South Africa in early May this year.”
DEFF will be distributing the masks to the relevant communities via its various offices over the next few days. “We are confident that every precaution will be taken during the distribution of the face masks. However, fishers are advised to sanitise the mask before use by washing it at 60 degrees Celsius and then ironing it. Through this donation we hope to assist in reducing the spread of COVID-19, in particular in our vulnerable fishing communities,” explains Botha.
The South African Fisheries Development Fund was established by Brimstone Investment Corporation and Sea Harvest Corporation in 2018 to help drive business growth and financial wellness for small-scale fishers; small, medium and micro-sized enterprises(SMMEs); and small-scale co-operatives within the local fishing industry.
PICTURE: (L-R) Abongile Ngqongwa (Acting Director: Small-Scale Fisheries), Sue Middleton (Acting Deputy Director-General: Fisheries Branch) and Dr. Mark Botha (CEO: Fisheries Development Fund)