Three years ago members of the public and businesses banded together to fund and resource the erection of a 14m high cross opposite the Van Stadens Bridge on the N2 freeway west of Port Elizabeth to deter repeated suicide jumps from the bridge.
“The cross has been highly successful because in the last three years no one has jumped off the bridge!” says Cross of Hope project coordinator, local publisher, Robbie Hift.
“Over the last three years I have heard numerous stories of desperate people who drove to the bridge and said ‘I’m going to climb over that barrier and jump off!.’ But when they stood and looked at the Cross of Hope and the giant letters that say ‘Jesus Loves You’, they changed their minds. They turned back again and decided to try and sort their problems out. The Cross has certainly been very successful!”
However the cross needs attention now to keep on doing its work of giving hope in Christ to people on the bridge. Bush has grown up on the hilltop site, obscuring the ‘Jesus Loves You’ message. And the solar lighting which previously lit up the cross at night does not work and needs to be replaced with new equipment.
The landowner of the cross site has promised to take out a tractor and bush cutters and clear the area of bush very soon. A reasonable quote of R11 000 has been obtained to install new solar lighting and a protected battery. Africoast Engineering has offered to pay part of this cost leaving an amount of R6000 to be funded by compassionate donors.
Anybody who is willing to help is asked to email Robbie Hift at email@example.com. Any money donated can be deposited into the bank account of a church in Port Elizabeth for safety sake.