23 February 2021: South African retailer, West Pack Lifestyle, donated 20 000 masks to the the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital (NMCH) as well as 100 kids Crazy Crafts fun craft kits for patients at the hospital. This donation valued at R130 000.00 was in response to the hospital’s latest public fundraising campaign titled, Serve Like Madiba and Give Like They’re Yours. 

The handover of the donation took place at the state-of-the-art facility in Parktown, Johannesburg, on Tuesday, 23 February, 2021.

CEO of West Pack Lifestyle, Chris Jr. Da Silva, says that the company, with over 60 stores across South Africa, heeded the campaign’s call as philanthropy forms part of the company’s values: “From our inception West Pack Lifestyle has been about family and community. As a proud father, the concept of Give Like Their Yours resonated with me; we wanted to make a difference in the lives of the children receiving treatment at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital. Likewise, we launched a campaign called Acts of Appreciation at West Pack Lifestyle throughout the month of February, and we thank Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital for the opportunity and honour to align with this amazing initiative and support their work, to proudly Serve Like Madiba.   ”

NMCH launched its campaign on 14 February to coincide with all matters of the heart, including Congenital Heart Defect Awareness week, one of the complex illnesses the hospital deals with in its offering of tertiary paediatric health services. The campaign is also supported by a television commercial which was aired nationally on the day, and which seeks to highlight the need of patients and families at the hospital.

CEO of NMCH, Dr Mandisa Maholwana, says the current needs for the hospital include donations to protect staff and families during the current pandemic. “Our needs as a hospital are vast and we are thankful for partners who continue to meet us where they can by engaging our hospital on how they can make a difference. As such, we are extremely grateful to West Pack Lifestyle for this donation as there is an ongoing need to make sure that our staff are able to continue providing care to our patients in a safe manner.”

Dr Maholwana, says that as a paediatric facility, NMCH also has unique needs for its patients and families. “Part of providing treatment to children, is ensuring that they are able to receive care in a child-friendly environment that recognises their requirements. Therefore, crafts, toys and books ensure that our patients have educational play materials at their disposal during their admission. The donation of the craft kits is therefore another welcomed gesture and response to our current campaign.”

Da Silva says that it is an honour for West Pack Lifestyle to contribute in a meaningful way and to honour Mr Nelson Mandela’s legacy in this manner: “Madiba always reminded us that change starts with us… with service to others and we want to show the healthcare workers here at the the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital how much we appreciate their service. We want to demonstrate to the brave children who have been undergoing treatment here, that we care.”

NMCH aims to raise R10 million through the first phase of the campaign which will through the year. Communications and Marketing Manager at the facility, Ayabulela Poro, says the public is encouraged to give what they can. “Our message to the public is that giving goes beyond monetary donations. Considering that our needs are diverse, we are reaching out to various members of our community including the public, corporates and foundations to support us in different ways. Giving sometimes take the form of a toy or time, volunteering and cash donations for those who can. These all go towards ensuring that our hospital is able to carry its daily duty of treating children with life-threatening illnesses.”

Actor Emmanuel Castis who was also present at the proceedings says, that he wants to encourage others to follow in the footsteps of Madiba as well as West Pack Lifestyle, “I’ve recently become a dad and the love and sense of family that I’ve experienced from West Pack Lifestyle has been incredible. As a country and as people of South Africa, we have a responsibility towards the children of our country. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child and I echo the words of this initiative, to give like their yours and treat the children who come here as if they’re our own because it is exactly that…they are our own.”   

The public and interested corporate partners are encouraged to join the hospital’s fundraising efforts to save more lives For more information visit https://www.nelsonmandelachildrenshospital.org/

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About NMCH 

The Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital (NMCH) has been operating since June 2017. NMCH is now the second dedicated children’s hospital in Southern Africa, and the first in Gauteng. The facility treats children in need of surgical and life-saving interventions as a result of complex illnesses. NMCH offers the following critical services: Neonatal and Paediatric Intensive Care Units (the largest in the country), Cardiology, Cardiothoracic Surgery, Neurosurgery, General Surgery, ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) as well as Renal Services including Dialysis supported by Diagnostic Radiology, Anaesthesia and Allied Health Services.