ADORED by many, a mother to her community because of her beautiful soul and unconditional love, Thozeka Ntlukwane-Letuka is known as the mini councillor as her door is always open and she is always eager to help.
The New Germany resident who has many titles under her name, has always been enviro savvy and it worries her that people are so ignorant when it comes to protecting the environment.
“People do not respect the environment anymore, people are polluting rivers, killing birds and dumping litter everywhere. It really worried me which was the reason I started my company, Big Start Training and Development Centre, where I teach people about the environment.
“In the olden days, rivers were so dear to everyone, our parents respected the environment and rivers were used for many things, but because the lifestyle has changed, people are neglecting this important resource of water.”
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Mam Thozeka has been part of the research on landfill sites and said most of the litter in the landfill sites comes from us.
“If people can learn to recycle and not dump everything, the world could be a better place. I teach people to recycle and even make money out of it.”
The hard-working Thozeka said she had voluntarily trained 10 eThekwini Expanded Public Works staff about the environment and looking after it with the hope that they would go out and do the same so that everyone can care for nature.
Last year, the eco warrior adopted two neglected pieces of land in the New Germany area.
“One of them was being used as a dump site. I got a donation of Vetiver grass which we planted to prevent soil erosion. At the other one we plant vegetables and as the harvesting season approaches, we will be taking up that project again,” she said.
Marriage life and toning down
Thozeka said she has always been a busy woman and with planning, passion, perseverance and changing a person’s life, made it easy.
“I am so strict when it comes to cleanliness, although I did have a helper and a washing machine, I would wake up at 4am to do washing and at 6am I had to be at my first work in Westville as I was doing three jobs.”
With so much energy and this passion to make a difference, Thozeka said she did not want to get married as she felt she would not be able to do all her work and have time to spend with a husband.
Now that she has done a lot for the community, Thozeka has finally settled down with her husband whom she describes as a perfect fit to the puzzle.
“I have been blessed with a hard working partner, a perfect delight. He is in Vereeniging and both of us are always on the road and we are both happy. I don’t know what I would have done if I ended up with a lazy man.”
Thozeka’s husband is a pastor and that makes her a pastor’s wife which also comes with responsibility of looking after her congregation.
“We raise funds and provide food parcels for grannies who are struggling. I also encourage young people to do regular visits and clean for the elderly people,” she said.
In all her endeavours, this phenomenal woman who is also a market researcher, transcriber, translator and Aller River Pilot Project liaison officer, did not forget her roots as in 2008/9 she ploughed back into her hometown, Philippolis, a small town in the Free State, by building an Old Age Home for the elderly who did not have anyone to take care of them.
Thozeka has two children and her husband has four, but throughout the years she has been a mother to many as she has adopted children to stay with her and cared for them.
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