Taxi drivers form a key part of transport networks around the world. And in March 2018 two South African taxi drivers made headlines by offering free rides to the elderly.
Yaseen Abrahams and Ashraf Cassiem are members of the Bonteheuwel community in Cape Town. Every day on their taxi route, the friends would see pensioners struggling to get to the hospital or clinic for the care they so obviously needed. Many of these elderly people were in wheelchairs or too weak to walk unaided.
Knowing that transport fares are beyond many pensioners’ means, Yaseen and Ashraf were so moved by the elderly’s plight that they decided to give something back and offer people over the age of 70 a ride for free from 9 am each weekday and after 10 am on weekends if they need to go to Athlone or Cape Town. The two friends felt that the elderly have given so much to the community that it was time for the community to give something in return.
As long as the pair meet their daily targets, taxi owner David Roman supports their efforts. He encourages them to continue the service and has even gone as far to invite that taxi bosses from neighbouring communities to follow their lead.