The name Matome means Joy or Happiness, and Sergeant Matome decided to celebrate his 40th birthday differently by being the source of joy to others. For this milestone birthday, he decided to go above and beyond his role of serving and protecting his people. He chose to feed his community as well.
He decided to celebrate his birthday by giving back to a community that he had been serving as a Police Sergeant for many years.
Motivated by what he saw while driving around his community, Matome realized that a lot of people didn’t have food. This was made worse by the lockdown as most employers had a ‘no work, no pay’ policy. Many were left without money to care for their family’s basic needs. After an encounter with one of the community members, whose cry for help moved him to buy food, his vision to assist more people became clear.
And so Sergeant Matome decided to celebrate his birthday by giving back to a community that he had been serving as a Police Sergeant for many years. He decided to buy groceries for 41 families instead of the normal braai and cake type of party. By involving his friends as well, Matome hoped that it would influence and inspire others to share the little that they were blessed with.
‘We as people we have to work together and be united’
What drives Matome?
His favourite quote is by Professor Lumumba: ‘We as people we have to work together and be united’. Working in the Police Force is difficult during this time of COVID-19. They are able to see how people are suffering and what they are going through with their families. They are vulnerable, and most times their social grant is not enough to support the whole family. Matome likes to work with people and help them wherever he can. He comes from a poor background, so knows first-hand the pain of going to bed without food. Eleven years ago he was encouraged by a friend to join the police and use that as a way of helping people. His village, Ramotshinyadi, has been seriously impacted by the current situation.
Changing the narrative by showing communities the kinder and more emphatic approach.
Sergeant Matome’s act of kindness might come as a breath of fresh air in this type of work. Many see the police as people whose only job is to arrest those who break the law. It’s important for the police to change this narrative by showing their communities the kinder and more emphatic approach to those in the community who are hard hit by Covid19. Imagine if everyone in the world could feel each other’s pain. What a better place this world would be.
By giving himself the best birthday gift – the gift of giving to those who are having a hard time – Sergeant Matome found his passion. The joy he feels about his gift is greater than any present he could have received.
It certainly is true that giving is a gift that keeps giving.
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GOOD THOUGHTS • GOOD WORDS • GOOD DEEDS
Writer & Researcher for #ImStaying
I love learning new things, meeting people from all walks of life. I’m interested in community empowerment, languages, technology world affairs music and my children. I believe this country has so much potential and we are yet to discover it, we are all in a journey of self discovery and it’s a beautiful one.