Sovereign Foods answers AACL’s donation plea

2017-04-19 06:00
From left are Glenn Truscott (AACL Chairman), Thuto Maepa (Group Executive for Human Resources at Sovereign Foods) and Chris Coombes (Sovereign Foods CEO) where the cheque for R20 000 was handed over to the AACL.Photo:SUPPLIED

From left are Glenn Truscott (AACL Chairman), Thuto Maepa (Group Executive for Human Resources at Sovereign Foods) and Chris Coombes (Sovereign Foods CEO) where the cheque for R20 000 was handed over to the AACL.Photo:SUPPLIED

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ON March 22, the Animal Anti-Cruelty League (AACL) sent out a donation request in the PE Express after the organisation’s only mobile clinic was involved in a car accident and considered a write-off.

Uitenhage-based poultry producer, Sovereign Foods, responded to their plea with a contribution of R20 000 to purchase the much-needed vehicle.

“The incident occurred when our van was involved in a head-on collision with another vehicle that was travelling in the wrong direction on the one-way off ramp from Standford Road to Bethelsdorp. The impact resulted in the mobile clinic being a total write-off,” said Glen Truscott, Chairman of the AACL.

Truscott was relieved to announce that nobody sustained any serious injuries in the collision and the animals in the van were safe.

“Our employees transported the animal’s home with their personal vehicles,” he said.

Without a vehicle, the AACL’s daily outreach operations are halted as two field teams are normally sent out to northern suburbs districts to provide health and veterinary care to animals from less fortunate communities.

These districts include Timothy Valley, KwaNoxolo, New Brighton, KwaZakhele, Sewende Laan, Barcelona, Sanctor and Helenvale.

On average, three animals are transported to the AACL’s Clearly Park Clinic and Ninth Avenue Walmer Veterinary Clinic daily. These cases are generally for sterilisation and require an overnight stay.

The Clearly Park Clinic focuses on sterilisations, vaccinations, de-worming and other treatments provided to animals.

The new vehicle’s cost will be subsidised by the insurance paid out, as well as the donations received from Sovereign Foods and other private parties.

It is estimated that a further R40 000 is needed to purchase a new vehicle.

“We are thankful to Sovereign Foods for providing us with such a large financial contribution in a time when the country’s economy is experiencing a crisis. With the donation, we are one step closer in restoring our outreach operations that support community accessibility to animal health care,” said Truscott.

Group Executive for Human Resources at Sovereign Foods, Thuto Maepa, applauded the AACL for the vital role the organisation plays in the sustainment of animal welfare.

“As a poultry producer, we regard our bird well-being and health as a priority. All our farming operations follow strict measures that ensure our flocks are raised in the best conditions and are cared for properly,” Maepa added.

“Sovereign Foods is committed to its corporate social responsibility programme by supporting beneficiaries, such as the AACL, that provide positive initiatives to the same community we operate in.”

The AACL’s Nelson Mandela Bay branch has been in operation since 1983 and has 15 employees, as well as a volunteer base of 54 people.

Over the past four years, the AACL has sterilised 8 858 animals and wishes to increase that number with the help of the organisation’s dedicated sterilisation operating theatre.

Not a stranger to sustainable development contributions, Sovereign Foods donated more than R300 000 to various beneficiaries within Nelson Mandela Bay last year.

The current financial year sees the company’s corporate social responsibility department aiming to identify deserving education and community development programmes that require assistance.

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