A heartwarming collaboration between community members, KwaDukuza Municipality, and emergency medical teams successfully reunited a three-year-old girl with her family.
The incident took place in the Thembeni area, located north of Durban.
IOL reached out to Sicelo Sithole, a Ward 11 councillor from the ANC in KwaDukuza, who played a crucial role in assisting the family during the search for the young girl.
According to Sithole, the child’s mother works in Ballito but lives there due to travel difficulties. As a result, the three-year-old lives with her aunt and nine-year-old sister in Thembeni.
On the day of the incident, the aunt left home around 12pm for her usual business activities, leaving the nine-year-old to take care of her younger sister.
“When the aunt returned home at 5pm, she asked the elder sister where she (the three-year-old) was, and nobody could find her. That is when the community and municipality got involved and began searching for the child,” explained Sithole.
Since the child couldn’t be located, the community sought assistance from IPSS Medical Rescue the following day. IPSS’s search and rescue team, led by Marinus Nabal, joined the effort.
“We heard that a family was trying to locate a three-year-old girl. When we arrived on scene, I think the mother was already at the police station, so we began searching. There was another child who helped us look for her, as he was the last one to see her yesterday (on Monday),” Nabal said.
The young girl was discovered on Tuesday in a bush approximately one kilometer from where she had gone missing.
Although the child cannot speak, she displayed no signs of injuries but was hungry and thirsty. Her whereabouts during the night remain unclear.
“Nobody knows where she was,” Sithole stated, adding that the child was scheduled for a medical check-up at a clinic.