GMA Coronavirus Support for 37 residents in a Troyville home for the elderly

GMA Coronavirus Support for 37 residents in a Troyville home for the elderly

The elderly are the most vulnerable group during the national lockdown.

Home for the elderly

BACKGROUND: It is well known that the elderly are one the most vulnerable groups when it comes to the coronavirus. In South Africa, more than half of the 13 recorded Coronavirus fatalities are people over 70. Facilities for the elderly are therefore particularly strict and restricted during the national lockdown. One such facility is the Gerald Fitzpatrick Home in Troyville, Johannesburg. The home has 79 elderly ladies living in their independent living, assisted living, and frail-care units. One of their residents recently turned 102, six residents are in their 90s, 14 residents are in their 80s, and 40 residents are in their 70s. The home is particularly concerned about their 37 residents in the independent living unit - where these residents usually do their own shopping, cooking, and cleaning. For their own safety and the safety of other residents and staff, these ladies cannot go out at the moment, or receive visitors. The management of the home needs to take over the responsibility of their care during lockdown, but will come at an additional cost of around R60,000 a month - and this extra expense is simply not in their budget.

REQUEST FOR: Caroline Makubela and the residents of Gerald Fitzpatrick House 

ANGEL 1: Jacaranda FM’s Good Morning Angels in partnership with LottoStar

SPONSORING: R10,000 in #AngelRands

ANGEL 2: The Good Morning Angels Fund NPC

SPONSORING: The GMA Fund will add R50,000 to that (a total of R60,000) to enable Caroline and the team of carers at Gerald Fitzpatrick House to assist the 37 independent living residents with their food and essentials during the national lockdown


Dear Supporters,

The Gerald Fitzpatrick House & Nursing Home team trusts you are well and safe during this period. We hope that you are able to stay in contact with your family, friends and colleagues.

The purpose of this communication is to share with you the current status of our home with regard to the COVID-19 outbreak and the national lockdown, which is necessary to minimise the negative impacts of this pandemic. We fully support the steps the government has taken.

·       GFH currently accommodates 79 elderly female residents and is one of the few sub-economic homes left in Johannesburg.

·       One of our residents turned 102 this month, 6 residents are in their 90s, 14 residents are in their 80s and 40 residents are in their 70s.

·       Thirty-tree residents live in frail care, 9 residents are in assisted living and 37 residents are in independent housing.

 Current Support

·       The Department of Social Development (DSD) and the public hospitals have been very supportive of GFH, providing enough medical supplies to assist GFH during this period.

·       The Department of Social Development (DSD) is proactively providing its normal quarterly funding support for residents in frail care and assisted living. This funding goes a long way towards ensuring that these residents receive medical care and food every month. 

·       We are, as always, very grateful for their support and thank them for taking an interest in the work we are doing. We truly appreciate their continued support for the elderly ladies who live at the home.

Key Concerns

·       The main area of concern is the lack of food for the independent housing residents (37 elderly ladies), who are not able to shop as they used to.

·       As a result of the lockdown and as part of the precautionary steps taken to reduce infections coming into GFH, independent housing residents’ trips to the shops have been restricted and alternate plans are being made to assist these residents in receiving food. 

·       GFH is looking into completely stopping all trips to the shops by providing independent housing residents with onsite food. This will be aligned to the food preparation for the Frail Care and Assisted Living Residents.

·       The additional cost which GFH would incur to achieve this would be R61,297.96 (R1,656.67 multiplied by 37 independent housing residents) per month.

·       By reducing external exposure as much as possible, we are exponentially reducing the potential risk to which each resident could be exposed.

·       The funding team is currently looking into ways to raise the necessary funds to make it possible to immediately further reduce external risks, because COVID-19 could have a disastrous impact to GFH’s residents. 

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