Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, thousands of South African’s continued to work, bringing information, hope and help to those who are less fortunate. A few months ago, telecommunications company, MTN launched the “Everyday Heroes” campaign calling on South Africans to ‘shout-out’ their local heroes using #WeGoodTogether on social media, and the nation answered.
According to Jacqui O’Sullivan, Corporate Affairs Executive for MTN South Africa, throughout the months of June and July, hundreds of nominations poured in.“Our campaign attracted the most heartwarming stories from South Africans, recognizing those who are making lives brighter through their acts of kindness. In many cases these heroes are using their own time and money to reduce the hardships being felt by so many,” said O’Sullivan.
The campaign recognized the nurses campaigning for heaters to warm up their hospital wards; workers braving the worst of the outbreak to deliver essential services; journalists on the front-lines; teachers helping underprivileged learners with remote learning; individuals and organisations supplying warm meals; individuals taking care of abandoned animals; safe spaces for women, children and teens to seek refuge; and community members assisting impoverished households to survive job loss, depression and other challenges, plus many other individuals and organisations.
MTN made contributions of much-needed equipment and essential items to over 30 of the nominated individuals and organisations so that they will be able to continue their upliftment projects, and reach even more people.
To date, the below individuals have received their contributions, with others scheduled to receive deliveries by the end of August:
Sibusiso Masombuka, a teacher and sports administrator at Greenside High School who has helped students with remote learning in his personal time, was in need of laptop to continue teaching. Thanks to his passion and dedication to his job, Sibusiso was also presented with R5000 for himself, R20 000 for his school and a donation towards a kit for the ladies’ basketball team that he coaches.
Steven Maila, a member of Sandton SPCA, was taking money out of his own pocket to care for an overflow of abandoned animals – trying to feed them and keep them warm at a time when they weren’t even being considered in amongst the sea of human suffering. Steve was presented with 600kg of dog food, animal beds and blankets, and an R20 000 gift voucher to continue his work.
Rohin Singh, an acclaimed chef from the city of Johannesburg, has been using his passion for food to feed those in need. Rohin was presented with an industrial grill, an industrial stove, an industrial oven and a food voucher towards the purchase of perishable food items so that he will be able to feed more of the indigent and hungry.
Waiting in the Wings SA, founded by Owen Lonzar and Megan Carelse was presented with R68 000 to help them continue their work in the community. The initiative was started to help feed people in the entertainment sector. During the Covid-19 lockdown period, the initiative distributed vouchers to struggling entertainment professionals and created online shows to raise funds.
Ingrid Mhlungu, who is working to keep residents in the town of Alexandra safe by making, donating and selling beautiful safety protection masks to help prevent the spread of CoVid-19, was presented with four industrial sewing machines, and industrial over-locker and a collection of fabric with the aim of taking her business to the next level.
“It is heartening to know that the legacy of Covid-19 will not be entirely negative and that for every hero that we have recognised, there are thousands more out there. We trust that our contributions will provide the boost needed to enable these heroes to continue their work. Overall, we hope that the campaign achieved its objective of paying tribute to each and every South African who continues to work tirelessly to make a difference,” concludes O’Sullivan.