A Mitchells Plain mother, who is a recovering drug addict and rape survivor, is struggling to find work after losing her bakery job last year when the pandemic hit.
Shaundre Lottering, 35, says she fell into the trap of gangsterism and drugs when she was a teen and had her first baby at 15.
The mom of four reveals that she was gang-raped after her children’s father was murdered.
Now, six years clean, she discovered she has a talent for decorating cakes, but sadly lost her job as the company downsized due to Covid-19.
“Eleven years ago, I was gang-raped for four days, my kids’ father was just murdered by his friends and then they came after me, hoping that I would keep quiet about the things I knew,” she recalls.
“On a Thursday evening, a car pulled up and I knew it wasn't a good sign, I had no choice but to go with them.
“We got to (a house in) Strandfontein and the faces were guys I knew.”
The brave mom says over the next few days she was “raped, punched, stabbed, kicked and beaten up” by six men.
“I wished they would just kill me already, how much more could I take?
“The Friday, they dragged me up the stairs and ripped my pants off and took turns on me.
“On Saturday, they shoved bottles inside me and burnt me with candle wax. I couldn't feel my vagina or anus anymore, I was numb.”
She managed to escape on the Sunday and walked to a friend who helped her.
Shaundre says fear of the skollies coming back for her or her kids stopped her from going to the police.
A few years later, in 2015, she went into drug rehab.
“After rehab I found out that most of the guys were killed, and I could breathe again.
“I cleaned up my act, cake art became my coping mechanism after rehab.
“My aunt introduced me to cakes when I came to live with her almost six years ago.
“As a family, we struggle but we push through. At times I feel like I'm a burden because financially I’m not helping much. Lately I just feel hopeless.”
Shaundre taught herself how to decorate cakes by watching YouTube tutorials and joining Facebook groups.
She and her aunt now run a baking business called Taste of Heaven.
You can contact Shaundre on 074 019 6241.