Westonaria, a small wealthy town surrounded by gold mines situated in the far South West of Johannesburg, South Africa. It was formed in 1948 by the amalgamation of the townships Venterspost, proclaimed in 1937, and Westonaria, proclaimed in 1938. First it used to be called Venterspost, the name was changed to Westonaria when municipal status was attained in 1952.
The name is a homophone of ‘Western area’, after the township developing company Western Areas Ltd. Nicknamed Town of Choice and famous for gold, the gold that makes people cross borders, leave their homes and families in order to work and make ends meet.
Through multi-cultures, multi- languages and the vast people who have immigrated to this small wealthy town, Westonaria has created a language named Fanakalo. This is a mixture of all the indigenous languages. This was created so we can connect as well as communicate with each other.
The residents of Westonaria originate from rural areas; they are strongly rooted in culture and tradition. They portray their origin by staying true to who they are and respecting each other. The one thing I love most about Westonaria is that people here don’t imitate nor try to fit in, this town gives you the platform to be yourself, in so doing proudly and boldly practice your tradition. No one envies to be like the other, we are all proud of who we are in this town.
This is very rare to find especially in Gauteng Province. Everything is done at a small pace. No fast cars, bright lights and gilts, as most would describe Johannesburg. It’s amazing how people in this town have retained their true self and what defines them. Instead of switching into something we are not we instead learn each other about our traditions and culture. Mining area is our own world, our town is divided into compounds, single quarters, married quarters and now recently family units.
So each individual resides within the category that best fits him. And because this is a privately owned property, the mine gives land to the municipality to sell as part of community development. The mine has really welcomed every individual with warmth and love.
In each of our compounds we have a dining hall, where workers can go and enjoy their breakfast, lunch and supper, cooked by individuals who work for companies subcontracting the mine. Each residential is equipped with a gym, a stadium, a big community pool, both netball and tennis courts.
This area doesn’t only cater for mining workers but their families too. You can register a sporting activity and if you do well the mine will sponsor you. I played netball for Goldfields, and I had everything from a netball.
I love my town, It’s amazing!