GPCID 24/7 emergency number: 082 214 3228

OKCID 24/7 emergency number: 082 217 1386

Urban farming: More than just local produce

Parks and green spaces really breathe life into cities, and urban farms have the added benefit of creating jobs, and providing wholesome local vegetables.

We are lucky to have the Oranjezicht City Farm (OZCF) on our doorstep, on the corner of Sidmouth Avenue and Upper Orange Street in Oranjezicht. If you haven’t stopped by yet, you can do so between 08h00 – 14h00, Monday to Saturday.

This non-profit project celebrates local food, culture and community through urban farming. It’s managed by a small group of local residents, who are looking for like-minded people to get stuck in and join them – find out more on their volunteer page.

Their vision is to inspire positive change: “As individuals, we can bring about change every day through what we choose to buy and cook. But change also begins in our communities, and through action we can take together with our families, our neighbours, our local farmers, our local shops, and even our politicians. Together, we can assume more control over at least some of the food we eat, by understanding where it comes from, who has grown it, how it has been grown and how it has arrived on our plates.”

Image credits: Oranjezicht City Farm and Market

A move to buying more local produce is a trend that’s been steadily gaining traction, and research done by Nielsen found that 48% of consumers prefer locally produced ingredients and food.

Aligned to this, the City of Cape Town’s Council has just approved R3 million funding for the Urban Agriculture Programme, which aims to encourage and upskill urban farmers across the city.

The South African Institute of Entrepreneurship has been appointed as the service provider and 720 farmers will participate in an urban farming project this financial year. It is intended that 30 food (urban) farms will be implemented across the city within the 24 Sub-councils.

Secured sites such as backyards, schools, open space around City buildings, churches, NGOs, clinics and libraries that require no capital costs will be utilised.

“The goal is to assist households to develop home gardens to supply most of the non-staple foods that a family needs every day of the year, including vegetables and fruits, beans, herbs and spices and even animals and fish.

The intention is also to assist the participants to establish cooperatives and facilitate the hosting of market days and informal trading activities,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Urban Management, Alderman Grant Twigg.

We can’t wait to see this project take shape, and will keep you posted as we learn more!

Give a dog a home at Century 21’s Dog Adoption Day

There are only a handful of things that can instantly put a smile on almost anyone’s face: an old couple holding hands, a giggling baby, or a fluffy four-legged friend.

Our tail-wagging, dirt-digging, bird chasing canine companions are often our biggest protectors and best friends, and evidence shows that their ability to help us live healthier and happier lives is unmatched. Dogs are not only man’s best friend; they may be the key to living a longer life.

Emotional Health

For starters, they can improve our emotional health tremendously. You probably know that dogs can learn to understand a number of the words we use, but did you know that they’re experts at deciphering our body language too? A loyal pup will look to your eyes to gauge your emotional state and respond to your silent signals as best as they can. This is what makes them such great companions – they’ll always be there for you after a tough week at the office. There’s no love like a dog’s love.

Physical Activity

People who own dogs are four times more likely than non-owners to meet modern guidelines for physical activity. Nothing quite motivates you to get out the door and go for that morning walk like two puppy dog eyes staring at you from the foot of your bed. Living with a dog makes you healthier by forcing you to exercise regularly! It’s easy to find a number of reasons to skip the gym, but you can’t miss walking the dog!

Anxiety

Our furry friends have long been praised for their ability to help mental wellbeing and reducing anxiety and loneliness, but recent studies have found that they lead to better cardiovascular health too. This is because dog companionship has been found to be associated with lower blood pressure levels and reduced stress, meaning that dogs don’t just fill your heart; they actually make it stronger!

So, if these fur babies add so much good to our lives, why is it that so many of our dog rescue centres are constantly teetering on the verge of full capacity? Unfortunately, Cape Town has a severe stray dog problem. Many of these poor pups have fallen victim to unfair and unfortunate circumstances, leaving them in a desperate search of food, shelter and care.

This is when our local animal shelters swoop in to help, with very limited resources and little publicity, to try and give these animals the second chance that they deserve.

This Saturday, on the 17th of April, Century 21 City Bowl & Mdzananda Story are hosting a Dog Adoption Day at Gardens Rugby Club, where they hope to make the dreams of a home come true for a few special pups. So, come on down to enjoy a fun-filled day for the whole family and look forward to giveaways, food stands, dogs on show on the “catwalk”, and, of course, doggie adoptions.

We understand that, for many, adopting a furry friend just isn’t feasible, especially if you stay in an apartment that prohibits pets or you don’t currently have the time to commit to looking after one. Fortunately, there are a number of other ways to help local animal shelters. If you have the means, consider donating essential supplies like pet food, toys and blankets, now that it’s getting cooler.

We’ve put together a list of a few local dog shelters doing great work to help:

Mdzananda Animal Clinic

21297 Govan Mbeki Road, Khayelitsha, Cape Town, 7784 | 082 251 0554

Oscars Arc

128 Russell St, Foreshore, Cape Town, 8001 | 081 347 0784

African Tails

56 Koeberg Rd, Brooklyn, Cape Town, 7405 | 021 510 7360

Cape of Good Hope SPCA

1st Ave &, 1st Rd, Grassy Park, Cape Town, 8000 | 021 700 4140

TEARS

Lekkerwater Rd, Sunnydale, Cape Town, 7975 | 021 785 4482

New Year, New Spots (on Kloof Street)

New places opening up in our area has never made us more excited than it does now. After the year we have all been through, we have needed these three gems – The Sneaker Shack, Ëlgr restaurant, and Kloof Street Hotel – to breathe new life (and unique concepts) into Kloof Street.

The Sneaker Shack 

A sneaker laundry service may seem like an odd concept to many South Africans, but this specialised service has become desirable because of our evolving sneaker culture. As Thabiso Hadebe of Black Faff, a local sneaker customisation company, told The Sunday Times: “Over the years I’ve watched them go from being something that only kids and students wear to having billionaires such as Richard Branson wear them to meetings. At the end of the day it’s a shoe, it’s whatever makes you feel comfortable, because at the end of the day it’s who you are.”

This service, most importantly, forms part of our evolving environmentally-conscious culture, giving people an easy way to clean and look after their sneakers so that they last, instead of just buying a new pair when your old ones get a bit worn out.

So, if you want your beloved sneakers to be cleaned to your specification by trained sneaker-care-technicians within a 48-hour turnaround time, visit their store on 8 Rheede Street, Gardens, or contact them on their website. They’re currently hosting a competition where you can stand a chance to win 1 of 3 vouchers to The Sneaker Shack worth over R500 – to enter, simply fill out this quick form with a few questions about your view of pre-loved sneakers.

(Source: Sneaker Shack’s Instagram account).

Ëlgr restaurant

Located on 75 Kloof Street, Ëlgr (previously home to Janse & Co) was founded by Swedish chef Jesper Nilsson, who spent lockdown bringing to life this modern, casual, and multi-cultural dining experience. Jesper comments: “I take inspiration from my Nordic background and combine it with my culinary experience from South Africa. I take pride in craftsmanship and strive to create dishes that are authentic, trying to understand not only the flavours but also the cultural background of each component in the dish. Limiting yourself to one particular style means you are defining the outcome before you go through the process.”

You can make online bookings here, or contact Ëlgr here. Note that they have been affected by the current restrictions, but are discussing plans going forward, so take note of their Instagram page’s bio for updates!

(Source: Ëlgr’s Instagram account).

Kloof Street Hotel

We have been waiting for this newbie to open up for a while, and it’s finally here. Forming part of Lion Roars luxury hotel and lodges portfolio, Kloof Street Hotel is decorated in natural, earthy tones but still maintains a vibrant personality. The ground floor has everything you need to start your day off on the right note: a coffee shop and restaurant, as well as a shared working space and conference facilities.

The sunny rooftop deck has a bar, pool, loungers and outside tables amidst lush greenery – providing all the air and space needed for social distancing.

To experience this new gem, you can book online here, or visit them on 8 Rheede Street.

What’s new on Kloof?

It’s always difficult choosing where to eat out or grab a drink in Oranje-Kloof. Here are a few of the latest introductions additions to the area: Wolf House, Rick’s Café Americain and a completely revamped Bacini’s all open near you! These passion-driven restaurants offer some of the best quality food and service in one of Cape Town’s most trendy areas. So – who exactly are these newcomers on the scene?

Wolf House 

(Source: Wolf House, 2020)

Wolf House is a new spot on the block, and a prime location for everything from ribs and, burgers to and pizzas – also, did we mention they have a rooftop bar? This gem offers a scenic outdoor experience to go with rustic urban design. You can never go wrong with a mouth-watering burger and beer on the spirited Kloof Street.

Rick’s Café

(Rick’s Café Americain, 2020)

A cheeky change of location for Rick’s Café into the vibrant and lively Kloof Sstreet is the go-to place for drinks, dinner and dancing. It sStill has the same diverse menu offering a range of dishes from Moroccan, Mediterranean and American cuisines to satisfy your palate. The Victorian style atmosphere takes you back into the 1940s, distinctly reminiscent of the classic movie Casablanca.

Bacini’s

  

(Source: Bacinis )

Bacini’s is a Roman inspired, family-owned restaurant that offers quality food, and service, and a brilliant overall dining experience. With a new fresh look after a complete revamp, you can be rest assured that you’ll get the same quality pizza tossing since 1989. 

We would recommend their menu’s Nono’s Carbonara Pasta and Meterazzi Pizza if you ever make a visit.

Cape Town’s first COVID-friendly food hub is here!

Africa’s first dining experience designed specifically to be COVID-friendly has just launched on our very own Kloof Street! The Real Foods Group’s latest creation, Kloof Street Village, is a community of four of their food brands – Nü Health Food Café, Schoon Bread Café, and the group’s newest additions, Free Bird and Kofi.

This innovative COVID-inspired establishment has been specifically designed to abide by national COVID-19 rules and regulations, and used the latest technology to enable contactless transactions on self-order kiosks (a mobile app that allows customers to order from either of the restaurants using a QR code), socially distanced tables, and large windows, allowing for more than enough air circulation. Customers are also able to order ahead using the Mobi app, and can collect takeaway orders from a dedicated contactless area.

In a Bizcommunity article, Dean Kowarski – CEO of Real Foods – states: “COVID-19 has changed casual dining, so we’ve embraced the new requirements for a safe dining experience at Kloof Street Village and have considered how people want to socialise. Although the site was secured prior to lockdown, we completely redesigned the restaurant during lockdown by conceptualising what it would take for maximum health and safety. The store features perspex screens to cordon off certain areas, while still allowing for a social vibe between socially distanced tables. Technology is used to facilitate contactless transactions and there is a large outdoor seating area for fresh-air and summer socialising.”

The new establishment was a collaborative effort from four award-winning local architects and designers, who joined forces to create a clean and modern space that allows each brand to uphold its unique identity, yet still compliment the overall design. Their intention was to create a beautiful space where customers enjoy spending their time, and feel safe while doing so.

So, what exactly can you find in this culinary hub?

Nü Health Food Café

Image source: Nu’s Facebook page.

Nü has been around for a few years now, scattered around the Atlantic Seaboard or in select Virgin Active Health Clubs. Nü’s philosophy is centred around food as a source of medicine for the body, and follows forward-thinking science and food trends, sourcing nutritionally-dense ingredients from the best local suppliers.

A few menu highlights include a delicious Vegan Burrito, an Asian-inspired Salmon Bowl, and of course, their range of fluffy flapjacks and waffles. Have a look at their menu – you won’t be disappointed!

Schoon Bread Café

Image source: Schoon’s Facebook page.

Previously only located in Stellenbosch and Somerset West, Schoon is finally making its City Bowl debut. This Café regularly collaborates with the best local artisans and farmers, using their products to create high quality, clean food. While its focus is on bread and pastries, its chefs are passionate about good food and always experimenting with new concepts to bring unique café-style dishes.

We recommend their Mosbolletjie French Toast and Chickpea Smash Sandwich. And you have to grab a few pastries on your way out, of course! You can browse their menu here: https://bit.ly/2Um3eAn

Free Bird

Image source: Freebird’s Facebook page.

Free Bird was launched in the midst of the national lockdown, when Real Foods CEO, Dean Kowarski, noted that the South African food scene lacked a premium free-range crispy chicken burger and strips concept. This crispy fried chicken is different from the greasy chicken that we’re used to, as only locally-sourced clean, wholesome ingredients are used when making it.

Our menu favourites have to be their Kimchi Burger, their Crispy Strips, or their hand-cut Waffle Crisps. Take a look at their full menu here: https://bit.ly/3pppNCx

Kofi

Lastly, what would a Cape Town culinary village be without a source of premium small-batch roasted African coffee? That’s exactly what you’ll find at Real Foods’ new concept, Kofi, along with a wine, beer and spirits list curated by Publik Wine.

Kloof Street Village can be found in the new development on the corner of Kloof and Rheede Street in Gardens. Pay them a visit and let us know what you think!

Help our local businesses survive COVID

SMEs have been hard hit by the pandemic, and provide employment to over nine million of the 10 million people employed in South Africa according to Stats SA. So what we can do to support them? Let’s start by shopping local – whether it’s in stores or online, and encourage our friends and family to do the same.

Here are a few favourites:

Daisy’s Deli

Visit their online shop for fresh farm produce which is ethically and locally sourced. All meat and dairy products are free range and pasture fed; they have a great vegan range; deli products and a bakery. They currently deliver to Cape Town CBD and surrounds, Atlantic Seaboard, Hout Bay and the Southern Suburbs.

Liquorice & Lime

Situated at the top of Kloof Street, this friendly neighbourhood café is open for table service again. They also have a ‘supper club’ – selling homemade family meals to be enjoyed at home.

Tanja Hagen

One of our local residents is making delicious lemony goods including lemon curd, gin lemon curd & a limited number of limoncello marinades, made with homemade limoncello, herbs, zest, honey and garlic. You can place orders via Facebook and delivery is free in the city bowl and Atlantic Seaboard.

Reader’s Warehouse

Next time you’re at the Lifestyle Centre on Kloof Street, pop in to the Reader’s Warehouse at the top of the escalators. Their staff are warm and friendly, and they have a wide array of well-priced books, board games and notebooks. They also have lovely recipe books which make perfect gifts!

Dish Food & Social  

The Dish Food & Social team create a weekly menu of wholesome dishes, which are priced at R250 for four, or R150 for two. They only charge R25 for delivery, and you can also collect directly from them, and they’ll bring your order out to your car. Don’t miss their Christmas in July feast, which will be delivered on 25 July. It’s a perfect way to treat your family or house mates.

Let us know what other local businesses you’re supporting through lockdown so we can feature them on our Facebook page.

What are my rights during COVID-19 lockdown?

COVID-19 has resulted in an outpouring of information – if we’re not talking or reading about it, we’re waiting in anticipation for President Ramaphosa’s next address, which leaves most of us with many unanswered questions. The COVID-19 virus has created such a new world at such an accelerated pace, that these unanswered questions are expected, because it’s impossible (and likely unhealthy for our mental state) to take in all relevant information.

Our GP/OKCID team have been working 24/7 since lockdown started, which means we’ve been dealing with individual’s questions and concerns head-on since the beginning. We’re here to sift through the mass of information and deal with the most important questions relating to your rights during this lockdown.

  1. What are my rights regarding treatment if I breach lockdown regulations?

Our police commissioner has sent out fresh, detailed guidelines on how South African Police Service (SAPS) and municipal police must conduct themselves. It states that “there can simply be no justification for torture, ever” amongst several other detailed directives. We have made sure our teams are educated on these guidelines, to ensure you’re handled appropriately. You can download the full document stating your rights and our security officer’s responsibilities on our Covid-19 info page.

  1. Can we refuse to be tested for COVID-19 if we’re not showing any symptoms?

As stated by BBP Law Attorneys: “Our law states that no person who is suspected of being infected with the COVID-19 virus and/or who has been in contact with someone who may be a carrier of the COVID-19 virus may simply refuse consent to an enforcement officer for the:

  1. Submission to a medical examination where bodily samples may be drawn from you by a registered doctor or nurse;
  2. Admission to a health establishment, quarantine or isolation site; or
  3. Submission to mandatory treatment.

It is a well-known fact by now that the COVID-19 virus does not cause everyone to develop symptoms, you may however still be a carrier of the virus and therefore you may be reasonably suspected and requested to submit yourself for a medical examination.

Now what is the position if you simply refuse to be tested? In this case, the enforcement officer is authorised to place you in mandatory isolation or quarantine for a period of 48 hours, pending a warrant being issued by a Magistrate authorising the state to conduct mandatory medical examinations on you and if necessary, treatment. You could also be held at a State isolation or quarantine site in order to potentially prevent transmission of the virus.

Furthermore, you will have acted illegally by refusing to submit yourself for the necessary medical examination. You may be criminally prosecuted and if found guilty of the offence, you may be sentenced to jail for a period of not more than 6 months and/or a payment of a fine.”

With every right comes a responsibility. We’re trying our best to educate our team on their conduct, along with abiding by all regulations pertaining to handling staff at work (carrying out daily temperate and attendance records, providing sufficient mask and hand sanitiser supplies, and carrying out hygiene practices). We ask you, in return, to hold yourself equally responsible and remain within the confines of your home, limit your movement to your office and supermarket, and try not to ‘over’ socialise during our ‘level 3’ lockdown regulations.

Lessons learned from the medical response to COVID-19

Right now, global attention is understandably on the pandemic. We’re looking for answers and hope. As such, all eyes are on the World Health Organisation (WHO), who are demonstrating an evidence-based approach and a belief in the power of collaboration. We’re huge advocates of working together and are confident that our partnerships with SAPS and local organisations are integral to our successes in the area. We’re interested to analyse what lessons we can learn from the evidence-based approach to handling COVID-19.

A hugely encouraging aspect of the WHO’s approach has been collaboration. During COVID-19 we have seen the launch of an unprecedented initiative, the first global trial to test a number of drugs approved for other uses to see if they can be repurposed and used on patients with severe COVID-19. This worldwide WHO joint effort from medics, researchers, and patients in all sorts of countries is aptly named SOLIDARITY. It reminds us of the strength we gain by working with our partners in law enforcement and communities.

The WHO is also an evidence-based body. They amass the most convincing scientific research and use it to ‘direct and coordinate international health’. Politicians around the globe are, at the very least, absorbing WHO findings, and most of the restrictions or lockdowns have been informed by WHO science and guidelines. Of course, each country is also considering their specific understanding of their communities, economy, geography and many other factors to create a tailored approach. In this way, we at the GP/OKCID can look to policies working elsewhere, and then consider how to translate them into our particular environments.

The WHO are constantly updating their guidance. They are honest in acknowledging that research becomes outdated as new information emerges, and transparent that as we learn more guidelines will change to remain current. Many governments, on the basis of WHO findings, denied the necessity of wearing masks, but when evidence-based advice was updated, introduced them at a later date. This is about being transparent. They didn’t make the ‘wrong’ call and then correct it, it’s just that the ‘right’ decision is the right decision given the current information and can therefore be superseded or altered whenever we learn more.

We must be brave and agile enough to introduce new policies and approaches for our team as different information arrives, in confidence that this shows us to be flexible and informed rather than worrying that it reflects on us as having made the wrong call previously.

Evidence led practice isn’t only effective in a pandemic, or a medical context. It also isn’t new to South Africa, but actually central to the national governance approach!

Managing social and criminal issues can also adopt this approach. We are constantly responding to the situation on the ground, but are learning from this pandemic that our best response will also be informed by the evidence of what works to limit damage (of any sort) and increase trust in our team. There’s a role for intuition in the moment, but we must also look to research rather than lean on assumptions. Often the data is surprising, and it’s a moveable feast as this pandemic is teaching.

There won’t always be directly relevant information for us to point to, and in those cases, we should create an idea, and then test it on the ground. This means measuring results, like the impact of certain initiatives or approaches, whilst continuing all of our work to keep the OKCID a safe, clean, appealing place to live, work and play.

Crime in Cape Town, or even just our neighbourhoods is too significant for us to wipe out, or even to effectively respond to, alone. We can take from the handling of COVID-19 that there is benefit from admitting the scale of the problem, and the impossibility of immediately resolving it. We can also adopt the learning that we can most effectively reduce the problem by working together. Just as collaboration between different organisations, hospitals, charities and governments has helped the COVID-19 response, so too can our teamwork with SAPS and charities increase the efficacy of our local efforts against crime, grime and social issues.

We hope that you are able to remain safe, well, and in accordance with the latest government advice through this pandemic. Though we have adjusted our service at this time, we and our partners at SAPS remain here to protect and serve you, so please do get in touch if we can help.

How to lower your utility bills and save money

There’s never any harm in saving a little bit of money at the end of each month, especially in our current circumstances. One way to do this is by lowering your utility bills, which is easier than you may think – really all you need to do is become a little more mindful of your habits. Use these tips from our team as a guide to slashing your next bill.

Dress for the occasion

Don’t be hesitant to dress down a little more than usual when it’s hot outside, rather than amping up the aircon. While you’re in the comfort of your own home, there is more room to wear lighter clothing as opposed to stuffy work pants and closed shoes. Once you begin using your outfit as a means of regulating your temperature before skipping straight to an electricity-draining appliance, you’ll find that it’s possible to keep cool and comfortable without unnecessarily running up your electricity bill.

Limit your shower time

We know how tempting it is to stand under the warm stream of water,, especially as autumn sets in and our mornings get colder. But showers can use anything between 6 and 45 liters per minute, so bear that in mind when you’re in no rush to get out from under that warm water. Another easy way to save water in the shower is by turning the water off when you don’t need it, like when you’re lathering your shampoo, or scrubbing yourself off.

Lower the temperature on your geyser

Your geyser is responsible for distributing hot water to sinks, showers, dishwashers and washing machines. You may find that a large portion of your electricity bill goes towards your geyser maintaining a constant store of hot water in its tank. By lowering your geyser’s temperature to roughly 45 degrees Celsius, you can shave some of the expense off of your electricity bill. Another way to save money on your geyser is to turn it off whenever you go on holiday or even leave your house for the day. Just remember to turn it back on when you get home and give it 30 minutes to heat up again before you can run hot water.

Use grey water to flush your toilets

Although water restrictions may not currently be at their most severe, using the grey water from your shower to flush your toilets every now and then could save you a Rand or two. Old cisterns can use between 9 and 12 liters per flush, while new ones use about 6. It really doesn’t hurt to leave a bucket in your shower to catch grey water, soon you won’t even notice it. Plus, moving the full bucket to the toilet afterwards can act as your arm workout for the day!

Use your appliances strategically

This point can prove to be very helpful when trying to lower your electric bill. Everything from the dishwasher to the tumble dryer can be used in a way that reduces expense. When using the tumble dryer, make sure that you dry loads of clothing consecutively, rather than waiting between loads, as this ensures that the machine remains a more constant temperature instead of having to heat itself up again each time. When loading the dishwasher, make sure that it is at maximum capacity each time you do a wash, rather than doing two half washes. When making a cup of tea, fill the kettle up based on how many cups you’re making – there’s no need to boil a full kettle when you’re only making one cup.

Always remain on the lookout for dripping taps

Leaks waste water. A slow dripping tap may not appear to be much of an issue, but you’ll be surprised how much water you could be wasting. It goes without saying that any wasted water will have quite an impact on your water bill, and wouldn’t you rather be using those 8 extra liters a day than (literally) letting them go down the drain? Even if that leak really doesn’t pose as much of a problem right now, remember that almost every leak will always worsen over time if left alone.

GP/OKCID fully functioning during lockdown

The GP/OKCID, in partnership with all our service providers, both from an operational and social upliftment point of view are fully functional during the SA lockdown period and have put specific measures in place to make members of the public and staff aware of the seriousness of COVID-19.

Please download the relevant documentation via the SA government Coronavirus portal.

REPORT A PROBLEM

If you have information about any suspicious behaviour or witness a crime please report it to us immediately. Please provide as much detail as possible.