Being a Kenneth gardens resident by: Benedict Govendor

Article by: Fundiswa Hlatshwayo on July 23, 2013 in Ixia court, Kenneth Gardens

Benedict Govendor is one of the old citizens of Kenneth gardens, she was born in Durban in Kwa-Zulu Natal in 1959 September 12.

Benedict grew up in Sydenham and moved to Chatsworth where she spent most of her childhood life with her siblings. She played games such as skipping rope as and hop scotch with her siblings. Her nickname was Lulu and she’s still goes by that name even today. All her family is still around except her late brother, she has 6 siblings but only five left. Her family were renting a single room in Chatsworth when they decided to apply at the Martin West for a flat in Kenneth Gardens. She was given a new flat with her two kids and her husband.

She found the relocation difficult because all their life was in Chatsworth and they had to move to a new place with new people and different life styles. A year  after the relocation she says they got used to the place and the people around them.

She tells us about how beautiful and clean Kenneth Gardens was back then when she first moved in to the place. How the nice the environment was back then, the grass was always short and clean there were no papers lying around the place. The maintenance of the place was good, the buildings were in a good state, they were painted beautifully and the stairs were clean. The washing lines were in a good state and safe to hang your washing all day.

They didn’t have transport problems as they were using public transport because they did not have private cars. There was a Glenmore bus that use to pick them up just outside their flats but now that bus is no longer available.

There are no taxis to from some places to Glenmore, so they now need to walk down to the mall to take the Umbilo taxi which is a bit far for older people to walk that distance. When they moved to Kenneth gardens only white people stayed in this community and they gave them hard time as they were the first Indians to move to this place. After the whites moved out everything was fine. She has heard about the crime that take place in the area but she has never had faced it herself.

Most criminals are caught and arrested she says. She tells us that drinking and using drugs was not allowed back then because they signed a petition as a community. Now drugs are used in the community and nothing is done about it and she thinks the problem that causes the youth to be engaged in such things is unemployment. She thinks if the residents can work together and help the youth to get jobs that could resolve the drug abuse issue. She doesn’t see herself leaving Kenneth gardens as it has been the affordable place for her as she is divorced.

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