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Woolworths and MySchool hand over a gift of hearing.

Today, Woolworths and MySchool celebrated the handover of a R400 000 donation – raised through their 2015 Christmas campaign – to the Children’s Hospital Trust, the fund-raising arm of Cape Town’s vital Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital.

The donation has been used by the Trust to purchase specialist Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) equipment that will enable the hospital each year to help save the lives of 10 children with life-threatening ear disease and prevent hearing loss in 750 children.

The Woolworths Christmas Giving campaign was supported by international music sensation Pharrel Williams, and funds were raised as a special additional donation every time a customers swiped their MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet and their linked Woolworths cards in-store between the 5th of November and 25th of December.

“Woolworths and MySchool are such valued supporters of the Children’s Hospital Trust and the Red Cross Children’s Hospital,” says Louise Driver, CEO of the Children’s Hospital Trust,

“As benefactors of their annual Christmas Campaign, the Trust has have been able to purchase much-needed ENT equipment to perform life-changing operations and interventions on children who suffer from severe ear disease, ensuring that they regain or do not lose their ability to hear. We want to thank them for their generous donation, as well as all the customers who swiped their cards while shopping. Every little swipe has made a huge difference in a child’s life.”

The new equipment purchased by The Children’s Trust includes a high-speed otologic drill that is needed to perform the surgery that can cure cholesteatoma; a disease of the middle-ear that can lead to death of a child. Patients at the hospital’s Out Patients Department will benefit from a specialist microscope used for examination, diagnosis and during procedures to prevent hearing loss.

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This will assist in more accurate and effective diagnoses, and improved procedures, which, in turn, will help the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital maintain its high standards of pediatric care.

“We are delighted that our customers were part of this successful campaign to give the gift of hearing to South African children in need,” says Pieter Twine Woolworth’s General Manager of Loyalty and MySchool,

“The funds raised for this was in addition to our normal contributions to customers’ beneficiaries. So, it was an easy way for them, at no extra cost, to participate in the essential, but very expensive upgrade of the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital’s ENT equipment. The festive season should always be about giving, and it is such a pleasure to help to improve children’s access to specialist medical care.”

The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet fundraising programme is one of South Africa’s biggest community support programmes. We raise essential funds for schools, charities and environmental organisations (our beneficiaries) through a system that encourages cardholders to swipe their card at our retail partners, who will give back a percentage of your purchase value to the beneficiary of your choice. The system allows cardholders to make a difference to a worthy cause without it costing them a cent.

The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet programme raises more than R4 million per month for schools and charities.

More than 1 million South Africans carry MySchool cards. Supporters apply for a free MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet card and can select up to 3 schools and/or charities as their beneficiary/ies. When they purchase items from participating retailers they swipe the card with the purchase.

A small percentage of their transaction is then allocated to their beneficiary school or charity. The partner stores pay the contribution on behalf of the cardholder. All these transactions are recorded and a statement is sent to individual supporters on a monthly basis.

While originally the MySchool programme was exclusive to schools and only schools could sign up as beneficiaries, the programme has been extended to include charitable organisations and other worthy causes. MyVillage organisations are charities that care for people; MyPlanet organisations care for animals and the planet.

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About the Author

Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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