Woolworths donates R500 000 to support medical workers

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Woolworths and its community loyalty programme MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet have donated R500 000 to the Gift of the Givers Foundation to support medical workers with protective wear and equipment.

The retailer on Tuesday issued a statement indicating that it had partnered with Gift of the Givers as it is a recognised partner in government's Covid-19 response and has already set up Covid-19 testing sites and is also raising  "urgent funds" for medical equipment and protective gear.

"It is critical to keep our medical workers safe as it is their expertise and hard work that saves lives," said Woolworths director of corporate affairs, Zinzi Mgolodela.

Gift of the Givers is aiming to raise funds to also purchase and supply protective masks, Hazmat suits, gowns, gloves and goggles, needed to protect nurses and doctors, the statement read.

"As the crisis escalates, we, as a country, must do everything possible to protect our health workers who, every day, bravely and selflessly, put themselves in the firing line of this disease. 

"This donation will hugely help our fund raising efforts as well as create awareness that South Africans can help to make a difference, even under lockdown," said Badr Kazi, Gift of the Givers director.

The Gift of the Givers Foundation is a beneficiary of the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet loyalty programme. Woolworths customers can nominate them as one of their beneficiaries and in that way contribute to fighting Covid-19, the statement read.

"Funds are raised via swiping the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet card at participating retailers at no cost to the cardholders as the retailers make the contribution on their behalf," Woolworths said.

Woolworths is part of a growing list of businesses which have contributed to government's efforts to fight Covid-19. Others include Naspers which has contributed R1.5 billion, of which R500 million will go towards the Solidarity relief fund and R1 billion to be used to procure personal protective equipment and medical supplies.

The Motsepe family, in partnership with companies associated with it, has contributed R1 billion, Fin24 previously reported. The Rupert and Oppenheimer families have also contributed R1 billion each.

Compiled by Lameez Omarjee

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