Ford Motor Company volunteers continue improving and changing people’s lives as part of the company’s annual Global Caring Month, held in September each year. In 2019, 30 organisations were supported by employees from Ford’s Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria, the Struandale Engine Plant in Port Elizabeth, along with Ford dealers in South Africa and Southern Africa.
Through September and into October 2019, 772 Ford employees and dealer staff gave their time and expertise to support and assist their nominated charities, non-profit organisations and communities, accumulating almost 10 500 hours in volunteer work.
“Ford’s annual Global Caring Month is our highlight of the year, giving our employees and dealers the opportunity to go out and make a real difference in people’s lives,” says Neale Hill, MD of Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA). “Although we support a wide range of community empowerment and upliftment projects year-round, Global Caring Month enables our enthusiastic volunteers to join forces and reach out to the community in a coordinated and impactful manner.
“From establishing a water system for a special needs orphanage in Mozambique to installing a borehole and fully functional kitchen at a children’s home in Zimbabwe, and refurbishing schools, clinics and special needs centres in South Africa, our volunteers have done us proud by truly living up to Ford’s ‘Go Further’ brand promise,” Hill adds.
Aside from manpower, making these projects possible also requires funding, and the Ford Motor Company Fund – the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company – once again assisted by disbursing over R1.8-million in grants to the nominated organisations, through Global Giving.
In Gauteng, the eager teams of Ford staff, resplendent in their bright blue shirts, spread out far and wide, from Ennerdale and Kempton Park in Johannesburg to Mamelodi, Nellmapius and Soshanguve in Pretoria. They set out repainting and revamping schools, creches, orphanages and foster care facilities, and helped create an organic gardening facility to help people grow their own vegetables to feed their families. Additionally, they assisted several job creation initiatives to help unemployed people learn how to make products for sale.
Education was the focus for the volunteers in Port Elizabeth, who got their hands dirty repairing several schools, from transforming classrooms to installing toilet facilities and outfitting kitchens for feeding schemes. Two environmental clean-up campaigns were also conducted along some of the city’s most important waterways, with the education of young learners integrated into these important projects. Adult learners benefitted too, and were trained in the skills of sewing and small business development in order to become entrepreneurs and create their own small businesses.
In Cape Town, the Barloworld Ford dealership in Tygervalley assisted with revamping the Tableview Angels house of safety which supports destitute families by giving them a hand-up in life. The Barloworld Ford dealer in Bruma supported the Lambano Sanctuary that cares for children with life-limiting and life-threatening illnesses, helping with maintenance, cleaning and decoration of the gardens and buildings, as well as assisting the kids with learning and skills development.
Ritchie Auto in Richards Bay helped transform the Able Centre autism treatment facility, painting the classrooms, setting up a computer learning centre and providing educational material and supplies.
Westvaal Numbi Ford embarked on two projects at local schools in Hazyview, Mpumalanga, which included levelling a soccer field and building a retaining wall to prevent soil erosion at Majika Primary School, and repairing a borehole and installing six flushing toilets at Mpunzane Primary School.
Across the border, Mozambique’s Ford dealer group, InterAuto helped Plataforma Makobo establish a water system for a special needs orphanage in Maputo to provide access to clean, purified water.
In Namibia, Novel Ford Walvis Bay joined forces with the SPCA to repair and clean kennels, including preparation for new concrete to be thrown, thus improving the living conditions for animals in its care.
The Chinyaradzo Children’s Home in Harare, Zimbabwe, received much-need support from Ford dealers, Duly Motors and Croco Motors. This comprised installing a borehole to provide an essential water source for the home, along with the donation of bunk beds, mattresses, stoves and groceries.