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R93 000 in donations and over 218 000 masks pledged to date on Maskathon

Monday, 31 August 2020  
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A little bit contributed by many can add up to a lot – this is the case with the Maskathon Challenge that the CDI is a part of, which aims to raise donations of over one million masks for those in underprivileged communities. This Maskathon drive has received over R93 000 in donations to date, which the CDI has been using to provide income opportunities to mask makers in the province. We caught up with some of these businesses to hear their stories and we invite you all to contribute to the cause.

The CDI is part of two key COVID-19 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) related initiatives in the Western Cape – one a platform that provides a single place for suppliers to promote their product ranges and for businesses to find what they need; and the other is the Maskathon.


The Maskathon Challenge is a national initiative of the Western Cape GovernmentCity of Cape and the CDI. CDI members have been producing thousands of masks over the past few months, and the initiative is directly benefitting craft and design SMMEs through providing a valuable source of income.

Please read their stories below and show your support by contributing here:

Nushka Philips of Wild Olive Jewellery


Wild Olive is situated on the Garden Route and our workshop, which consists of a small team of three, has been making face masks during the pandemic. We usually make textile beads, necklaces and accessories, and we are grateful to have this CDI opportunity to adapt and make face masks.


Mathokoza Nhlapo & Cheryldene Williams of Sithabe African Craft


Sithabe African Craft is a member of CDI that promotes an appreciation of cultural and innovatively handmade designs with beading. We focus on decor and body accessories, and corporate and personal gift products. Sithabe designs have always been crafted with women mainly in rural areas as breadwinners working from home. Cheryldene (Cherri) Williams has long experience specialising in textile sewing of bed linen, curtains masks and clothes alterations. The collaboration between Mathokoza Nhlapo (Sithabe) and Cherri is of two women who work from home, generating needed income whilst looking after their homebound children with disabilities.


Nomava Uriyo of Lindoleather


Lindoleather is a community-based, high-quality leather manufacturing company. We do bags, belts, phone pouches, scatter cushions and other leather accessories using offcuts. Due to COVID-19 we had to be flexible and quickly adapt to the new skill of mask production to respond to the market need.

We started our masks production a day before lockdown. I was approached by a pharmacy nearby us to make masks and supply them. I made a sample and they approved immediately. It has been a very positive experience for me because I worked with my husband and children. The masks production united us as family as well as we made money to sustain us during lockdown as our leather company was closed. 

Receiving an email from CDI was a blessing. I was super excited about taking part in this Maskathon Challenge. I am very grateful to CDI for the opportunity; it has made a difference to us as family.
May the Lord bless you all.

Lindoleather Facebook Page

Chanel Carolissen of Tailored Like Tom

Tailored Like Tom is a Cape Town based clothing brand founded and run by a 4th generation seamstress. We practice slow fashion and create pieces which are size inclusive, versatile and will last season after season. At TLT we believe that if you look good, you feel good and if you feel good, you do good. During the pandemic we are producing comfortable and fashionable reusable cloth masks.

Being part of the Maskathon has helped not just financially but also mentally. Dealing with the pandemic can be stressful but being part of the Maskathon and knowing you have a skill that can make a difference is very reassuring. 

Tailored Like Tom Facebook Page

Porcia Nyaniso of Iphuphalethu Sewing Project (NPO)

We are a non-profit organisation in Wallacedene, Kraaifontein. CDI has helped Iphuphalethu Sewing Project a lot during this COVID-19 period. At first it was so difficult  to face these business challenges until l registered at CDI as a member.

I have seven staff members, five of them are making masks and the other two are cleaning staff. CDI, may God bless all your support and online training sessions you give us every week. It gives us power and a reason to be part of community development. At the end of the day we also put bread on the table for our families at this difficult time.


Razaan Jakoet of Chic Fusion


Chic Fusion is a woman-owned enterprise that has a track record of ethical sourcing of materials, of training, employing and empowering women from marginalised communities, as well as of pushing boundaries with its innovation in hand felted home décor and accessories.

During lockdown, Chic Fusion rose to the call of the country and started making cotton masks for sale. With aggressive marketing on social media, we were soon in business supplying a few shops in the area and supplying companies as well as donating a substantial number to frontline workers and others in need. 

With many people working from home during a very cold winter it made perfect sense to re-introduce our wool felted slippers to the market. Chic Fusion had manufactured a range of slippers and decided that this would be the perfect time to start the range again and make our own without the need to outsource some of the workmanship. Our second range of slippers are now being launched to cater for the warmer summer weather.

We delved into making corporate gifts when the request came to make staff hampers to show appreciation to their staff.  This was a lovely new take and thereafter we received orders from other businesses for the hampers.

We are grateful for the orders from online shops, the new clients that have come our way as well as the export orders we received during lockdown. Keeping motivated and staying safe is key during this challenging period.

Thank you to CDI for presenting us with this opportunity to make masks. We appreciate every little bit that comes our way during this uncertain period.



Aqeela Oliver of Techaddon


Thanks so much to CDI for sharing this opportunity with me. We are a small business focusing on uplifting and upskilling individuals as well as providing them with employment. The majority of the production is run by females from disadvantaged backgrounds and areas. Due to COVID-19, we changed most of the production focus which used to be kids clothing to making masks due to the lack of exhibitions and markets taking place which is where most of your items were sold. We are now focused on selling and advertising these masks on online platforms and providing other institutions and organisations with our masks which are of good standards and compliant with the WHO standards.








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