Foetal Alcohol Syndrome spotlight

2017-09-21 06:01
Shamima Nazeer, CJ Couhiera, Louise Jones, Beyers Truter, Deborah Sullaphen, Marinda van Schalkwyk, Savarion Arendse and Clint Beech.

Shamima Nazeer, CJ Couhiera, Louise Jones, Beyers Truter, Deborah Sullaphen, Marinda van Schalkwyk, Savarion Arendse and Clint Beech.

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In South Africa, it is widely recognized by corporates and society alike the unique circumstances in which we operate.

Big businesses and communities have far reaching responsibilities that go beyond just helping family and customers, but collectively address issues that affect and impact us all.

We are a nation that is sometimes forced to empower itself and do great things.

At a breakfast event on 14th September, hosted by the Old Mutual Provincial management board, held in Beyers Kloof in the Western Cape, representatives from the Nedbank Business Banking space, Old Mutual Corporate division, Broker distribution and members of the agricultural sector, used the platform to discuss the power and benefits of collaboration and partnership with an objective to uplift the province and make a positive difference.

These regular provincial engagements with key stakeholder in the various provinces are a powerful and effective way that Old Mutual, through discussion with key players in the province, can tap into the very fabric of each of the provinces and identify the needs, challenges and opportunities.

At the event on Thursday the Old Mutual Foundation and the western Cape Provincial Management board once again identified an area of need within the community and demonstrated its support of the vulnerable members of society and donated R50 000 to the Beyers Truter FAITH Fund, to help combat Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS).

FAS poses a serious problem to various communities throughout the world but is recorded as posing the greatest risk in South Africa, which has the highest reported cases of babies born with this FAS.

The organisation aims to raise awareness surrounding the dangers of FAS and how it can be prevented.

FAS is found in children whose mothers consume large amounts of alcohol during their pregnancy.

The syndrome is characterised by a series of symptoms which includes brain damage and stunted growth.

On average, according to the Beyers Truter FAITH Fund, a healthy child will have an IQ level of 100 or more, while a child suffering from FAS will have an IQ level between 65 and 75.

“FAS is a serious problem, especially in the Western Cape. It was imperative for us to take action against this syndrome. There is no cure, yet it is completely avoidable. With the help of the Old Mutual and the FAITH fund, we believe that we can truly make a difference,” says Beyers Truter, owner of Beyerskloof and founding member of the FAITH fund.

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