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Thank You to “Team Rodwell”!

05 September 2021
On 7 May 2021, eight-year-old Rodwell Nkomazana was attacked by a hyena at an all-night church service, in Pedzai Village, Zimbabwe. 
Rodwell Nkhomazana

Rodwell suffered horrific and debilitating wounds to his face and was initially treated at the Parirenyatwa Hospital in Harare. Due to the extent of his injuries, Rodwell required several major reconstructive surgeries and was medically evacuated to South Africa for further treatment on 19 June. 

Since 21 June Rodwell has been to theatre six times to undergo multiple reconstructive surgeries and scar revisions. He is also working with an extensive team of speech therapists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and psychologists with regards to rehabilitation

In light of his successful reconstructive and rehabilitative treatment, an acknowledgement to the following patrons is pertinent:

Sr Liz Willson, for making the first plea for assistance which set in motion Rodwell’s recovery journey in South Africa.

The amazing and proficient Zimbabwean Team: Dr Paidamoyo Dhliwayo-Magwenzi, Dr Wayne Manana, Sr Chaku and the staff at Parirenyatwa Hospital.

Phuthi Mahanyele-Dabengwa, for her invaluable and selfless contribution, without which this campaign would not have been initiated. 

Meal SA for spearheading the noble and successful fundraising campaign, nationally and internationally. They have been part of this initiative since the very onset and their service exceeded expectations.

The Dandelion Philosophy for benevolently creating awareness and fundraising internationally.

Dr Sayuren Moonsamy for his overwhelming support and dedication, ensuring Rodwell’s safe transfer to South Africa with a commercial escort med-evac, as well as a liaison for his admission and advocating for the campaign. Special thanks to Dr Steven Lunt, Rachele Pretorius and Lorraine Melvill for their expertise and support during the evacuation.

Airlink for the fabulous service and accommodating our little patient, Rodwell.

ER24 for transferring Rodwell from OR Tambo International to Mediclinic Sandton.

Sandton Mediclinic for accepting Rodwell as a patient and for facilitating his treatment at a reduced rate.

Our dynamic, magnanimous and renowned surgical team: Dr Ridwan Mia, Dr Jameel Desai, Dr Razvi Ahmed, Dr Ali Makepeace, Dr Himal Sooka, Dr Hizir Mukaddam, Dr Lukmaan Variawa, Sr Erna van Wyk and theatre personnel.

Our distinguished paediatrician, Dr Kim Barnard, for her prominent role in overseeing Rodwell’s crucial care and well-being in totality.

The accomplished nursing staff members under the management of Sr Mila Monageng for their unparalleled nursing care.


The awesome team of allied workers for their exceptional rehabilitative care.

Occupational therapists: Vivienne Schmidt, Haley Norval and Kathryn Nish

Speech therapist: Andrea Fourie

Physiotherapist: Caitlyn Leslie

Dietician: Jeske Wellmann

Psychologist: Lauren Freese

Wound care on discharge: Lorraine van Lendt 


Gavin and Chantal Downward (Ocularists) for the more than gracious gesture of crafting and donating a prosthetic eye.

Dr Avish Jay Jagathpal (Prosthodontist) for the munificent donation and crafting of a prosthetic nose.

The Smile Foundation for their philanthropic gesture of taking over the fundraising campaign to ensure Rodwell’s continued rehabilitative care.

Nicholas Holt, Erko Janse van Rensburg and their families for their unwavering emotional support.

Zenith Lundell for her valuable assistance provided in the marketing and administration sphere.

Mr Michael Garth Robertson and Toon53 Productions for creating Team Rodwell’s motif.

Khurshida Sayed and Nadia Kolia for their dynamic networking for the fundraising campaign.

The anonymous donors for their magnanimous generosity for hosting Rodwell and his mom at a facility in Johannesburg, on his discharge.

The bounteous support from corporates, medical supplies companies, private individuals, and all community members. 

They say it takes a village to raise a child. It takes even more to give a child his life back. This was achieved thanks to the valiant efforts of “Team Rodwell”. While this harrowing experience is something we hope Rodwell soon forgets, there is no doubt in our mind that the love received from every donor and well-wisher shall live in Rodwell’s smile forevermore. 

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~ Maqshuda Kajee
South African Emergency and Medical Evacuation Nurse