Durban – “We hope this market will be a space for people to rebuild their livelihoods.”
This, according to organiser of the first “Made In Chatsworth” market, Kiru Naidoo, who said the massive economic impact of the Covid-19 lockdown had seen communities turn to sourcing local goods and produce.
The market will be held tomorrow, Sunday, at the Depot Road Memorial Primary School in Bayview, with gates opening at 9am.
“A Covid economy recovery plan to create jobs and support small business is the key message as the market is launched. This is the first market and we plan to hold it every Sunday,” says Naidoo.
“The Chatsworth community was devastated by job losses and people losing their businesses and we hope this market will be the space for people to rebuild their livelihoods,” adds Naidoo, encouraging people to produce and manufacture items themselves, to get the economy moving again.
The name of the market was inspired by Naidoo’s book Made In Chatsworth, which sparked local communities into action during lockdown. The book expanded into a brand as Chatsworth residents took to the “Made In Chatsworth” social media pages to advertise home industries as economic hardship hit many families.
Community markets focusing on local goods and services have surged during Covid-19. People have turned to side hustles to bring in much needed cash as companies closed doors and salaries were slashed.
Depot Road Memorial Primary School principal Yogs Moodley said the school was excited to host the market. The South African Schools Act empowers governing bodies to raise funds for its activities and the school’s SGB had passed a resolution in setting up the weekly market and to support the local community wherever it was able to do so.
Last year, the school took the lead in commemorating the anniversary of the first Indian indentured workers, by planting 160 banana trees as a living monument.
On Wednesday, Moodley said: “Our school community is rich in diversity and we are at the heart of the community. It is fitting that our latest project gets off the ground during Worker’s Month.”
For the first market, there will be a Worker’s Month theme to celebrate the heroes of the Chatsworth community who contributed to the freedom struggle.
Referring to the proud history of Chatsworth, Kiru Naidoo added: “The samoosa making, vadas and amagwinyas sent children to school and put food on the table. Let’s again get that spirit of self-sufficiency to energise our economy.”
The provincial MEC for economic development, tourism and environmental affairs Ravi Pillay is expected to attend.
Gates for the market this Sunday open at 9am until 3pm. For further information, email [email protected]
The Independent on Saturday