Every year Mandela Day means lots of attention is given to our projects from corporates for one day only, which can do more harm than good. This year it was decided that we would encourage companies to engage with the projects over a longer period, or contribute to a more sustainable difference… and it worked!
26 companies engaged with us this year, most of whom were new engagements . We engaged with companies like Eskom, Sanlam, Hatch and Old Mutual, Hollard Insurance, Michaelangelo Hotel, Deloitte and Altech Netstar.
Activities varied from a week-long engagement with a child care centre, to renovations and big blanket and clothing drives. We were about to connect companies with other community organisations, which we partner with in Alex.
Below are some of the Mandela-inspired examples:
Medtronic Africa visited a day care centre for 5 days, taking soup and rolls and reading to the children.
YFM did an extensive blanket driver and live broadcast from Altrek during the Rose-Act holiday club. The blankets were shared amongst our projects, as well as being given to the Old Age Home, Hospice, Phuthadichaba, Christ Church Christian Care Centre, Ratang-bana and Bathusheng.
American Tower Corporation spent a day cleaning, painting and doing maintenance at House 1. They purchased a new hob top so that homework club cooking can happen in House 1.
Torre Group invested in Takalani Day Care, doing a complete make-over with painting and repairs.
Public Investment Corporation invested in Ndivoyo with repairs, painting and resources, as well as treating the children to a party with a jumping castle, face-painter, Mandela Cake, party packs and balloons.
Gogo’s of Hope were treated to a movie by Mall of Africa and were given sandwiches, fruit and toiletry hampers prepared by Red Pepper Studios.
Goldfields spent the morning cleaning our offices in Marlboro at House 2. Capital Group went to the foster family and cooked a dinner, whilst Thirst and Meridian Wine did collections and spent time playing with the kids at House 5. Bureau Veritas Sandton team collected clothing for the children.
There were several other shorter initiatives too.
We are so grateful for the great interest and love shown to the community during this time . However we are keen to engage with more companies next year, particularly those with an eye to more sustainable longer-term solutions. In most cases, the once-off sugar high from a day of cup-cakes and fizzy drinks is not what Mandela would have hoped for.
‘ In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ –Acts 20:35
“There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to help others without expecting anything in return.’”
– Nelson Mandela