Sometimes, CARES cares for a family member.

This happened at a recent Miracle Campus surgical session, part of TLC’s Comprehensive and Restorative Eyecare Services, when Manzi Dvuba received a pterygium procedure that vastly improved his eyesight.

His daughters Sihle, age 25, and Zama, 27 years, are employed by The Luke Commission. Sihle works in the woodshop helping to make beautiful pieces for the Miracle Campus. Her mentor Kalvin says she “is a natural.”

Manzi is surrounded by his TLC staff daughters Sihle (left) and Zama.

Since Manzi’s CARES surgery, Zama has left TLC to pursue further education.

A few months earlier, Sihle told her father: “Come to The Luke Commission. They will help your bad eye.”

The girls’ mother died when Sihle was in grade four. Her father said, “I raised my three children until they were old by myself.”

It’s an emotional moment. Manzi’s bandage is removed the day after pterygium surgery during CARES week.

His third child is a son, age 20. Manzi said he purposely did not remarry while his children were young. He paid to send each child to high school.

“I grew up an orphan and was treated badly,” said Manzi. “I was beaten always and did not want my kids to grow up that way.”

He did not hit his children when they needed disciplining. “I talked through things with them. Communication and love made them strong,” he explained.

“How are you, Daddy?” his daughters ask. “Tell us what you see.”

Sihle has a one-year-old daughter who is cared for by Manzi’s sister during the week, while Sihle spends her days at the Miracle Campus.

Until Manzi came for eye treatment, he did not realize what Sihle was doing. “I was shocked when I learned she was working with wood,” laughed Manzi. “She did like to work with her hands when she was growing up.”

Manzi’s joy does not stop with himself. He dances and sings with another patient who has just regained her eyesight.

As his daughters became young women, they said to Manzi: “Daddy look for someone who will make you feel like Mama used to make you feel.”

“Just this year I took another woman,” continued Manzi. He married in January 2018.

Caring for family comes first at The Luke Commission, be it an immediate or an extended family. Just ask Sihle.

(by Janet Tuinstra)