UNICEF South Africa thanks corporate South Africa for swift response to COVID-19

06 April 2020

PRETORIA, 6 April 2020 – UNICEF South Africa has thanked South African corporates which have been swift to offer support to help protect the lives and welfare of the country’s children.

“We are enormously grateful for the very prompt support we have received from a number of corporates. This has enabled us to be nimble in our response to lend a hand to non-governmental organisations working hard to protect the lives of vulnerable children and communities affected by COVID-19,” said Ms Muriel Mafico, Deputy Representative of UNICEF in South Africa.

Momentum Metropolitan, a new strategic corporate partner of UNICEF, this week donated to UNICEF’s social protection programme to strengthen the capacity of Childline, another UNICEF partner.

“We are delighted that our support has been earmarked for Childline’s call centres nationwide which manage a tollfree helpline. This will allow Childline to almost double the number of counsellors and social workers offering guidance, mental health and psychosocial support and protection for children affected by COVID-19,” said Ms. Charlene Lackay, Corporate Social Investment Manager at Momentum Metropolitan.

“Of utmost importance is that this will enable us to mitigate gender-based violence and offer prevention and responses to children and families through our call centres which service the whole country and our online counselling service,” said Ms. Dumisile Nala, National Executive Officer of Childline.

Access to running water and soap is a critical first line of defence against COVID-19, yet this is a challenge in many informal settlements. Before the lockdown, one of UNICEF’s first initiatives was to launch the Little Hands Matter campaign to raise funds for handwashing stations in informal settlements. This offers everyone the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of vulnerable children and communities.

In support of this initiative, Discovery Vitality has come on board. Vitality members with Vitality Active Rewards will now have an additional option to donate their Discovery Miles through this new Move to Give campaign. In addition, the Discovery Fund has committed to match all member donations towards this initiative.

“Our core focus at Discovery Vitality is to encourage behaviour change for better health outcomes. In trying to limit the impact and spread of the COVID-19 virus, we are offering our members a chance to contribute positively towards the health of children in vulnerable circumstances,” said Dinesh Govender, CEO, Discovery Vitality.

Media contacts

Greer van Zyl
Communication Specialist
UNICEF South Africa
Tel: +27 79 896 3447

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About UNICEF

UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in over 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special efforts on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children everywhere.

Working with a range of partners, UNICEF has had a presence in South Africa since the end of apartheid and continues to work towards bettering the lives of all children in the country.

Visit https://help.unicef.org/ for more information on how to donate to Little Hands Matter and other UNICEF initiatives to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

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General queries: Carine Munting, Partnership Manager; cmunting@unicef.org; 079 356 3622;
Grace Otieno, Major Donor Manager, gotieno@unicef.org; 083 846 1280