#OperationSA raises more than R10m in 5 hours for Syria

2016-12-21 18:52
Yusuf Abramjee (File, Who's Who SA)

Yusuf Abramjee (File, Who's Who SA)

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Johannesburg - Five-day-old NGO #OperationSA raised more than R10m in pledges within five hours to provide humanitarian assistance in Syria.

The fundraising drive took place on Tuesday night during a live telethon which started at 19:30.

At just after midnight R10 030 000 had already been raised.

In a statement issued earlier on Wednesday, Yusuf Abramjee, a leading social activist involved in #OperationSA, said the response from the public has been amazing.

"South Africans and foreigners opened their hearts. The donations will go a long way to ease the pain and suffering of Syrians," Abramjee said.

Abramjee and Catherine Constantinides are amongst those who launched the #SAveSyria campaign following growing calls for assistance for those affected by the Syrian war in Aleppo.

Almost 800 callers pledged on ITV (DSTV 347) and various radio stations, including CII, VOC, Radio Islam, Deen TV and Radio Al Ansaar, broadcast the event.

Public urged to maintain support

The funds accumulated will be donated to seven local charities involved in humanitarian work in Syria. These are Jamiatul-Ulama SA, the Al-Imdaad Foundation, Al-Quds Foundation, Jamiatul-Ulama KZN, Muslim Judicial Council, Islamic Relief SA and Africa Muslims Agency.

Trustee of the Al-Imdaad Foundation Qari Ziyaad Patel said he was overwhelmed by the response from South Africans.

"More than anything else; more than all the pledges coming through, I think for me, as a humanitarian, I would say I've been taken aback by the level of response and the level of care from our South African community," he said.

The Al-Imdaad Foundation has been responding to the crisis in Syria since 2011 and is, according to Abramjee, also co-ordinating a visit to Syria "to look at conditions and relief work underway".

The fundraising drive also received support and encouragement on social media during the live broadcast on Tuesday evening.

"We need to continue this noble legacy and indeed this is a legacy taught to us by Madiba. Whenever we have this opportunity to rise up and serve humanity we should always do that," said Patel.

#OperationSA has urged members of the public to continue supporting the cause. 

Read more on:    yusuf abramjee  |  syria

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