THE Coega Development Corporation (CDC) leadership and staff will honour Nelson Mandela and his legacy by committing the organisation’s resources and “hand power” to two local organisations as part of its Nelson Mandela Day initiative.
The CDC will paint at Livingstone Hospital – and donate 27 mattresses to its paediatric ward – and then move through to Cheshire Home for the Disabled in Cleary Park where it will also paint and hand over donations from the CDC staff.
The CDC decided to partner with these two organisations as they align well with projects the CDC is currently involved in – such as the Department of Health infrastructure programme – and its strategic corporate social investment (CSI) initiatives.
“Coega has a fully developed CSI programme that focuses on skills development, education and training specifically. Given the CDC’s mandate for socio-economic development we do not endorse short-term donations or limited CSI as it neither makes a meaningful impact on people’s lives nor is sustainable,” said Ayanda Vilakazi, CDC head of marketing and communication. “Thus, when we decided to focus on Livingstone Hospital and Cheshire Home for the Disabled for our Mandela Day initiative, it had to align with our overall initiatives to ensure that the city and province experience sustained socio-economic development.
“So we linked with organisations that are associated with projects we are involved with in some way or the other. For instance, Coega recently undertook a major drive to employ and skill people with disabilities – and the linkage with Cheshire Home for the Disabled speaks directly to this. Towards the end of the month Coega will donate wheelchairs to Cheshire too.”
Starting at Livingstone Hospital first thing tomorrow morning, a group of CDC management and staff will roll up their sleeves to brighten the walls and bedframes of the orthopaedic paediatric ward which cares for up to 30 children with injuries and those born with physical abnormalities. The CDC will also donate 27 mattresses for the single beds and cot beds, panel heaters and toys and blankets collected by the CDC staff will also be handed over for the children’s play room.
“This project was adopted because of Madiba’s love for children and also the CDC to improve the lives of the people within the communities in which it operates,” said Thandi Rayi, CDC CSI manager.
A second group of staff will paint the Cheshire Home interior walls and donate second hand clothes and appliances to the organisation’s second hand shop – the funds of which go to sustaining the livelihoods of its residents.
“The Cheshire Home project links to the CDC People with Disability Programme focusing on incorporating people with disabilities into the workplace through placement, training initiatives and any other initiative aimed at assisting People with Disability to live better lives,” said Rayi, adding that the CDC had also absorbed one of the residents, Luxolo Voco as a Maths and Science Academy (MSA) tutor. A number of other residents have also been identified for CDC learnerships.
“Our Mandela Day initiatives speak to our long-term commitment to the province and to making a small, but sustained difference to the lives of community members, projects and government services,” added Vilakazi.