Entertainment, News

Author Tsikira believes in sharing

H-Metro

Praise Masvosva, Entertainment Reporter

Prolific author, entrepreneur and real estate mogul Zeb Tsikira and wife Colleen recently donated groceries to L’Arche Zimbabwe, a home for 23 people with intellectual disabilities.

The two spent time with these people in needy during their two weeks visit to Zimbabwe.

Colleen Tsikira with a beneficiary

Speaking to H-Metro on the sidelines of the donation, Colleen said its part of their life to give and consider people in needy.

“There’s more to a country than the glitz and glam we are marketed towards and are drawn to as a reason to visit.

Zeb Tsikira

“There’s usually a population who are less fortunate and may be usually passed over.

“Those are who we target for our travel support funding.

“We first noticed this when we travelled to Cuba and realised that outside the gates of our All Inclusive 5* Resort, lay a population that was devastated of the essentials of life.

“We knew we wanted to change that,” she said.

Colleen also told this publication that they had not planned to meet people with intellectual disabilities.

“It’s sad to say we hadn’t had the intellectually handicapped on our radar and we are beyond grateful to now know of how disadvantaged this group can be as well as the need for the support that is required.

“Part of our mission as a business is to provide sustainable housing and our visit to L’Arche showed how the clients are well taken care of shelter wise.

” We were however, able to contribute through a list of essentials that were provided to us,” she said.

She added:

“We typically build relationships with organisations we have worked with and L’Arche Zimbabwe will be no different.

“Our involvement may change over time but our commitment to them will remain the same.”

Asked about her experience in Zimbabwe for the past two weeks visit.

“We were last in Zimbabwe almost a decade ago.

” This experience was an eye opener in more ways than one.

“There are so many opportunities available but a lot of these are capital intensive opening up several opportunities for those in the diaspora to invest their capital back home.

“I believe in the concept of teaching my loved ones how to fish and using the funds that  i would have typically sent home monthly to create income streams for them to not only support themselves but to create income as well as  employment opportunities for those around them.”

Colleen also said when she is in Canada she misses the food she grew up eating, community and the love for the mother tongue.

“We have a few investment opportunities we have been brewing and we will be looking at establishing a few more opportunities where those in the diaspora can tap into, to support their loved ones.”

She encouraged women to work hard and provide for their families.

” Never be intimidated in a room full of men.

“Know your worth and value what you bring to the table.

“If there is no seat for you, be sure to create your own,” she said.

In another interview, L’Arche Zimbabwe’s community leader Time Bulawa hailed Tsikira the family for their support.

“We are grateful for their support and most importantly for finding time to be with us.

” It is that kind of relationship which we treasure profoundly.

“The difference of L’Arche with other homes is that we don’t take care of persons with intellectual disabilities but we live with them sharing life in mutual relationships.

“We create placements where people with intellectual disabilities find meaningful engagements.

” The placements are sheltered workshops that capacitate and provide occupational therapy.

“These include crafts workshop which make candles and beads among others,” he said.

He added:

“Our desire is to provide an environment that showcase talents of people with intellectual disabilities.

“As a community we face problems of lack of resources.

” It’s difficult to find food and relevant equipment to create a conducive environment for them.”

Meanwhile, Zeb and Colleen’s book titled You Can’t Save Your Way to Wealth is slowly getting to people.

The two also mixed and mingled with artistes during their visit.

According to Zeb they have shot some videos and also recorded some songs which will hit the market soon.