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Achiever donations reward charities

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Absa and the SA Jewish Report made donations to Hatzolah, the Chevrah Kadisha, and Afrika Tikkun last week in recognition of the selfless work they do within and without our community.

Each year at the Absa Jewish Achiever Awards ceremony, Absa, the event’s title sponsor, gives each nominee a gift in honour of their achievements.

This year, nominees were informed that Absa would make a donation in their name to these organisations. Each organisation received a R10 000 donation sponsored by Absa and the Jewish Achiever Awards.

“We wanted to do something constructive and good with the money,” Howard Sackstein, the chairperson of the SA Jewish Report, said in a virtual handover on Friday.

“Rather than give everyone a tzatzkeh that sits on a shelf and needs dusting, we’ve made a difference to many people’s lives. For that we thank Absa.”

Absa regional manager Cliff Mayinga said he was proud of what Absa had been able to achieve in its relationship with the SA Jewish Report. “Thank you for doing what you do,” he told recipients. “Your work is often thankless, and you are making a difference to the communities in which we all live. This is a small token of our appreciation, together with SA Jewish Report, to say thank you and keep up the great work.”

Marc Lubner, the chief executive of Afrika Tikkun, said, “The money we receive is put to invaluable use. We can now go back to our organisations and share the news with our staff that their work has made such a difference. We’re so grateful that an organisation like Absa takes time to associate itself with the work being done on the ground.

“One of the greatest challenges we face is to continue to motivate our teams each day. When we get that recognition, we feel it, and the fact that our organisation is recognised for its work and endorsed by Absa makes a world of difference.”

Lance Abramson, the chairperson of Hatzolah, said that aid organisations are under increased pressure due to the pandemic, making the donation a considerable relief.

“We’ve been on the frontline, needing protective equipment and plenty of other things,” he said. “We’ve launched a wellness programme that also comes with costs like nursing staff, oxygen machines, and more. These things cost money, and we’re deeply appreciative of the funds we’ve received.”

Saul Tomson, the chief executive of the Chevrah Kadisha, said that the donation recognised the efforts of the more than 500 nurses and carers operating at the group’s old-age care facilities, often a thankless task.

“It’s not a sexy cause in South Africa,” he said. “This is the first time I’ve seen care for the elderly being part of the discussion from a charity point of view.

“I hope that with this funding we can make a difference in our staff’s lives and recognise their contributions. We are very blessed and grateful to be part of the initiative.”

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