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It has been months since a drop of rain fell in Northern KwaZulu-Natal but residents were showered with love this morning when East Coast Radio’s Project #WaterShare arrived to rehydrate Vryheid.


People, schools and businesses across the province generously heeded the call for help when Project #WaterShare was launched on East Coast Breakfast with Darren Maule on Tuesday (26 January 2016). As a result, more than 360 000 litres of bottled and tanked water were trucked in to the town this morning during a special live broadcast of the show.


Contributions came from all corners of the province and will be used to bring relief to areas that have been brought to their knees by the crippling drought. NGO, Gift of the Givers, has come on board to assist the station with on-the-ground logistics and will be coordinating the province-wide water drop-offs.


Today’s focus saw bottles of water being distributed to four areas in and around Vryheid – Mvuyane, Mvuzini, Nceceni and Mhlongo Farm.


East Coast Radio’s General Manager, Boni Mchunu, says with parts of our province reeling from lack of rain, every bottle counts. “As East Coast Radio, we cannot sit back and do nothing to help. This is why project #Watershare came about. It’s our way of providing a platform for the people across the province to get involved so we can make a meaningful difference. The response so far has been phenomenal but there’s so much still to be done.”


The District Mayor of Zululand, Mpiyakhe Hlatshwayo, dropped in on this morning’s live broadcast to express his heartfelt thanks to the people of KZN. “We have been in the grip of drought for months now and every day it is getting more severe,” he told East Coast Breakfast hosts, Darren Maule and Natarah Nadesan. “ The once mighty Klipfontein Dam here in Vryheid is just a shadow of its former self. In fact the dams across Zululand have been badly hit. It’s just a terrible situation.”


In addition to the tens of thousands of litres of bottled water donated by residents all around our province, big business has been quick to lend a helping hand.


Spar KZN contributed 28 000 litres; Oasis Water together with Cargo Carriers tanked through 32 000 litres to Vryheid as well as 13 000 litres of bottled water; Star Retailers donated 1500 litres; Thirst committed 6000 litres which were trucked from Newcastle; aQuelle sent through 1500 litres and

Elliott Mobility trucked in 2500 litres to Vryheid this morning.  And the contributions continue!


Back at the station’s headquarters in Umhlanga, the parking area has been transformed into a sea of blue and listeners stream in with bottles of new, sealed water. The collection drive continues until 6am on Monday. By 1pm on Friday, people of KZN had donated 450 000 litres of water to Project #WaterShare. The contributions will be pumped into the Gift of the Givers’ relief efforts in KZN.


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