Across South Africa, young faces are lighting up with smiles, as Working on Fire distributes 1 850 WOF Kids Care packages to the children of firefighters and High-Altitude Team (HAT) members. These personalised boxes were generously donated by Working on Fire staff members, management, partners and kind-hearted individuals like the staff at the Woolworths Adderley store in Cape Town.
The Woolworths Adderley store’s Corporate Social Investment (C.S.I). committee decided to adopt the #WOFCare Package initiative and generously donating 72 Christmas boxes, as well as arranging a small handover Christmas party.
“At Woolworths we aim to make a difference and to help make every moment memorable,” explains Nicky February: Store Manager. “Our staff, here at the Adderley branch, identified the WOF kids care packages as a cause which they would like to support. Staff members selected a WOF kid from a list and personally filled and beautifully wrapped the boxes and then raised extra funds from among themselves for the party. It is our way of saying thank you to these firefighters who passionately serve others when they fight unwanted wildfires.”
These “gifts of hope” aim to provide for essential personal care basics and educational toys and bring some much-needed financial relief during this time of the year.
“This is one way we are honouring our firefighters who make enormous sacrifices every year in saving lives and property,” says Trevor Abrahams, Managing Director for Working on Fire.
These children’s moms and dads – the WOF firefighters and HAT members – work long and dangerous hours, fighting unwanted wildfires. They often sacrifice time with their families to go save live, properties and the environment in remote areas, late into the night.
Namhla Mapha Tshane, firefighter from the Hottentots Holland Team, smiled and said a big “thank you” as her four-year old daughter, Amila, received her gift with laughter. “I enjoy seeing the children so happy. We are very grateful for this opportunity.”
This #WOFCare Package initiative was inspired by the celebration of the Centenary of Nelson Mandela It aims to emulate Mandela’s legacy about caring for our children. In 2003 Madiba, said, “Our children are our future and one of our basic responsibilities is to take care of them in the best and most compassionate manner possible.”
“The WOF Kids Care Packages come as a welcome gesture this time of the year,” explains Abrahams. “It is adding great joy to the lives of firefighters and their children, of whom many rarely receive gifts or get the opportunity to participate in celebrations like these. Through this initiative, Working on Fire is living out its value of making a difference. We would, however, not been able to have done it were it not for people believing in this dream and helping us realise it. Thank you to everyone – like the staff at Woolworths Adderley store – who helped make this initiative such a success.”