MUTOKO — Death of a loved one, especially a spouse, is traumatic and unbearable. When her husband of many years died, Emery Dziko was left to fend for herself until philanthropist Richard Musiiwa came to her rescue.
Ambuya Dziko said she faced untold hardships since the death of her husband, a decade ago and to add salt to injury according to African tradition, there was no male child to help her tackle the economic hardships.
“The death of my husband brought so much misery in my life and I had no-one to help me out,” said Mbuya Dziko.
However, a well established businessman in Mutoko District decided to plough back into the community after realising that many widows were suffering in society.
Richard Musiiwa (49) said it saddened him to see widows going through harrowing experiences and thereby decided to re-integrate them by uniting all community members to tackle the challenges faced by widows in their community.
“I was deeply saddened by the conditions these women are living in and I decided to chip in by helping out one certain widow by building her a house.
“Community members saw the need to continue this initiative and we have built a long term commitment to deal with the plight of these widows,” Musiiwa said.
Together with the help of community members from late last year, Musiiwa has built houses for three widows in Chatiza, Kapondoro and Musokowaya villages.
He said the village heads and community members pinpoint the person they think is most in need and Musiiwa supplies all the building material and new furniture whilst the villagers build the houses together.
Another beneficiary Nhamo Kuraramo (60) from Chatiza Village said she was very grateful for the gesture shown to her by community members as it was very hard for her and her children since the passing on of her husband.
“I am grateful for the love and support the community has given us. I only had one hut which I shared with my children and did piece jobs to sustain the family but it was not enough.
“Mr Musiiwa built a beautiful home for us in January this year and provides us with food from time to time, “said Kuraramo.
Speaking at the handover ceremony of a house to Mbuya Emery Dziko last week in Musokowaya village, Musiiwa urged the villagers to unite for a common cause and develop their communities than to wait for the government and donors.
“We must not only rely on donors or wait for the government to come and assist us when we can work together and develop our communities,” said Musiiwa.
He added that the programme had seen people in his community working together as they have also managed to build a police station at Kapondoro village which has ensured peace in the area. They will be working towards the construction of roads.
Musiiwa also donated food to villagers and gave the village head of Musokowaya a bicycle as a token of appreciation as he had managed to mobilise people in his village towards the building of Mbuya Dziko’s house.
Chief Chimoyo, who was the guest of honour at the handover ceremony, commended the good work being done by Musiiwa in uniting villages in Mutoko to work together.
The United Nations adopted June 23 as International Widows Day, with the intention to give special attention to situations
faced by widows and their children.