The residents of Ons Tuis old age homes couldn’t stop smiling the past couple of weeks after donations of food, money and essential goods were received.
The Ons Tuis-group quickly felt the financial impact of the lockdown period. The various homes in Pretoria, Mokopane and Parys are very dependent on fundraising projects to effectively manage the care facilities. Of course, these functions could not go ahead during the lockdown, and Ons Tuis decided to launch a campaign to ask the public to offer their support.
“We were surprised and overjoyed at the willingness of South Africans to support the vulnerable elderly,” says Mr Jaco Bothma, the managing director of Ons Tuis. “We were also excited about the network of care organisations who worked together to give the campaign even more momentum.
“I don’t think people realise how much this means to us. It is not just food and money creating hope, but the true involvement and heart that gives our residents strength.”
Since the campaign kicked off, GrootFM and Spar contributed R5 000 through their #JouMenseMyMense segment. GrootFM was so touched by how alone and terrified the elderly feels during the lockdown, they created the Letters for the Elderly initiative, to comfort older persons.
From that the organisation WeCook chose Ons Tuis as a beneficiary for their WeCan project. Through the project South Africans had the opportunity to buy R59-combos consisting of 5kg of vegetables and 1kg of soup for Ons Tuis.
An overwhelming six tonnes of vegetables and just over a ton of chicken soup to the value of more than R71 000 were contributed. The public bought 1 218 combos. Ons Tuis had to scramble this week to arrange enough transport to pick up the food and distribute it between the homes.
“We are overwhelmed by the open hands of the community,” says Bothma. “We appreciate each contribution, from individuals and businesses to organisations, from the bottom of our hearts. It definitely lightens our task of ensuring our older people are well-looked after in their golden years. We thank every South African who supports our campaign.”