A homeless couple who have been together for 22 years want to encourage others not to lose hope and to keep safe during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Caroline Jacques, who calls herself Carol, and William Christian, who goes by Bola, have been living in a secluded bush in Mouille Point for several years.
“I was married to my husband for 12 years and still stayed on the streets and slept close to the police station in Mouille Point.
“My husband was always very sick because of his illness and (he) told Christian to look after me when he passed away because they were friends,” she said.
Jacques said she did not like Christian much when they met, and would become upset with her husband’s suggestions that she should be with another man.
“What I didn’t realise was that my husband only meant well. I learnt much later that Christian will be the one to look after me,” she added.
Before the Covid-19 outbreak, Jacques and Christian would wake up together, take a walk to the sea before helping to collect litter strewn outside the residents’ bins.
Since the start of the lockdown, they fetch supper from a Sea Point resident who has been feeding the homeless in the area every night.
Peter Wagenaar, from Mouille Point, added: “Caroline asked us for books to read during the lockdown. She has got nine novels from us already and returns it when she is done.”
Jacques said: “I have been reading books as well and it helps me think of better things. My mind won’t think about snatching someone’s purse or hurting someone on the streets. Reading has helped me be more positive.”
Despite living on the street, Christian said they have prevailed by staying together. “It’s also good not to look for trouble with anyone,” he added.