Mandela Day always holds such a strong sense of unity and magic across South Africa as we commemorate the legacy of Nelson Mandela. It’s a day that we, as Bidvest Insurance, love to get behind and this year was no different. On Wednesday 18th July, 3 teams of volunteers headed out the office doors with their sleeves rolled up and ready to spend their Mandela Day immersed in giving back to the community.
The first team of volunteers from our Umhlanga office headed to the Umhlanga Beach front where they were met by Dewet Geldenhuys and his team from Umhlanga UIP (Urban Improvement Precinct). Our team handed over a Bidvest Insurance donation of R5 000 to contribute towards their ongoing efforts to maintain and improve our stretch of coastline. We then joined the UIP team to scour the beach and pick up any stray litter, but the main activity for the day was to assist in sand-dune rehabilitation, which is vital to rebuilding the wildlife of the area after a lot of their natural habitat had been washed away. This was achieved by planting vegetation and extending the baseline of the sand-dunes. It was our second consecutive year of assisting the UIP in this effort and it was astonishing to see the progress that had been made since our last visit.
The second team of volunteers from our Umhlanga office made their way to visit the Hillcrest Aids Centre, where we recently became a sponsor on their “Adopt a Bed” campaign – where our donation will pay for all costs associated with one bed in their respite unit. What’s great is that the entire donation goes directly towards helping HACT provide the very best care and treatment to their patients so that they, in turn, have the very best chance of returning home to their families and leading full, healthy, and productive lives. Our volunteers then carried out some maintenance on the HACT car park by filling in potholes and painting the parking bay lines. Coming from the Insurance industry, road conditions and parking lots are the types of issues we deal with on a daily basis, so it was fantastic to be able to contribute towards making this area a safer zone.
Our third team of volunteers was from our Joburg office, and they spent their 67 minutes at the Bethany House Trust in Krugersdorp – a cause close to Bidvest’s heart. The home was established in response to the critical need of young people for shelter, access to primary health services, and education – so it was great for our staff to interact and play with the children of Bethany House. Our team handed over a R40 000 donation which consisted of 4 vouchers, 2 from our fellow Bidvest companies Walton’s and Plumblink to assist with stationery and house maintenance, and the other two vouchers for Groceries and Medical needs. We were also able to treat the kids to gift bags jam-packed with goodies for them to enjoy.
From beach to the hospital bed to playground, we felt the magic of giving on Mandela Day, and hope to take this magic into everything we do as a company, always remembering and helping those less fortunate. Thank you to all those who were involved in making Mandela’s 100th Birthday, a day to remember.