Being homeless scares me more than Covid-19


Jeanne Butoyi, a permanent resident originally from Burundi, has been struggling to survive since the lockdown closed the hairdressers she works at.  Jeanne has been living in South Africa for 22 years and has been working as a hairdresser.  She lives with her husband and two children.  “Debt is piling up and even if the lockdown is lifted today, I don’t know how I am going to make up all the money I now owe.” she said.  Jeanne says that even thought evictions are prohibited during lockdown, her biggest fear remains being homeless.  “Yes, I am afraid of getting infected, but I am more afraid of becoming homeless and losing my place of work, which I also rent,” she continued. 

Rahma Hahimana, a full-time student, shares Jeanne’s concerns.  Her landlord is solely dependent on rent for an income and being homeless after lockdown scares her more than contracting the coronavirus.  “It is really difficult as a foreigner.”  After receiving help in the form of food this month, she is not certain where help will come from next month

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