Despite her busy schedule as pharmacy assistant at Frere Hospital, Malifa Myeki, 26, has initiated a charity drive to collect toiletry essentials for patients from the paediatric ward.
“My name is Malifa, and you can’t say that without having a smile on your face. My name means ‘to inherit’, and as I grew up, this was a name that became too heavy for me. But I have learnted to embrace it as I slowly found my calling.
“I’m was raised by a single mother, and I’m the only girl amongst two boys. I’m a single mother myself, and have seen the difficulty of having to put everything together,” said the 26-year-old Myeki.
She said she has been fortunate enough to have grown up in a community that believes in “it takes a village” and was raised by a number of people who each have had an impact on how she views life now.
“Before doing the course [pharmacy assistant] I’m currently doing, now (pharmacy assistant), I was doing a public relations course through Unisa. and I never thought I’d be able to use my qualifications again, but here I am.
“I stumbled through a lot of distractions but I think I’m finally able to say I’ve found my path.
“I was inspired to do good because of the challenges I’ve faced myself as a child who grew up with a lot of skin infections. I wasn’t properly educated on how to take care of it – even my mother struggled as the costss were too much for her.
“I am fortunate enough to have worked in the pharmacy and trained on how to take care of my daughter’s skin when faced with irritations,” said Myeki.
She said she saw similar problems in many underprivileged homes where personal hygiene took the back seat. That’s when she decided to use what resources she had to help.
Myeki said so far she has been able to give out packages to 100 children that included contained fragrance-free soap, face cloths, toothbrushes and toothpaste.
“When I put out the word about this project, the pharmacy staff couldn’t wait to help. People came out in numbers to contribute the wanted items and even bought wrapping paper.
“Frere Hospital The CEO Dr Rolene Wagner and my boss, pharmacy head Mmabatho Ndwandwe, heard about it and loved the idea so much that they had have granted me permission to do this on a regular basis.”
Malifa hopes the drive will grow bigger and spread throughout the hospital, so all the underprivileged patients benefit.
“If anyone is interested in donating, they can contact the office of the CEO of Frere Hospital CEO’s office on 043-709-1111 or e-mail us on Nomakhaya.firstname.lastname@example.org or Joy.email@example.com,” she said.