While the hotel’s corporate social responsibility programmes come to a climax with the highlight of Mandela Day on July 18, the hotel is committed to making a difference in the local community 365 days of the year.
“Responsible Business is at the heart of our company’s promise of making ‘Every Moment Matter’, which also means that we support and help advance the communities in which we operate. We aim to make meaningful contributions throughout the year by focusing our initiatives around three pillars: Think Planet, Think People and Think Community,” said Radisson Blu Hotel Port Elizabeth Interim General Manager Jessica Ferreira.
June was a particularly busy period for the hotel’s Responsible Business programmes, which included various Community Action Month activities:
• a Beach Clean-Up (27 June) and Youth Day Celebration (16 June) in partnership with SOS Children’s Villages;
• a Blood Drive (28 June) in partnership with the South African National Blood Services (SANBS);
• as well as a donation of linen to Sinako’s We Can House (June 28). The 476 items of linen will be used by the care centre for special needs children and adults, to make fabric diapers.
A total of 50 staff members from Radisson Blu Port Elizabeth volunteered a whopping 112 hours in June to get involved with the four different activities during the Community Action Month. Donations for the various projects totalled up to over R86 000.
“These programmes talk to the Radisson Blu brand, which is designed to make a big difference and inspire unforgettable experiences,” said Ferreira.
But these events were not just once-off projects, since the Radisson Blu Port Elizabeth believes in growing long-standing partnership through Responsible Business in the local community.
SOS Children’s Villages South Africa Corporate Fundraiser Mandy Spies said the organisation has benefitted in many ways from the partnership with the hotel, including an end of year party in 2018, regular linen donations, venue sponsorship for the charity’s annual fundraising tea, career guidance for the youth as well as an individual sponsorship and maintenance work on the SOS family homes.
“Long-term relationships are key to sustainability for NGOs. SOS believes in building mutually beneficial partnerships with companies that share our vision and mission. Together, we can make a more meaningful impact on the lives of our beneficiaries,” said Spies.
The SOS Children’s Villages’ beneficiaries are children at risk of losing parental care, and children who have already lost parental care and need to live in an alternative childcare setting.
“Our children love the outings, opportunities to learn and get exposure to new experiences and, to also do good for the environment. They love the special treats, as any child would. We sincerely appreciate and highly value the investments made by the Radisson Hotel group, to provide many more children with an equal chance to succeed in life,” said Spies.
Like the partnership with SOS Children’s Villages, the hotel enjoys an ongoing partnership with SANBS by hosting Blood Drives every quarter at Radisson Blu Hotel Port Elizabeth.
67 Minutes for Mandela
Radisson Blu Hotel Port Elizabeth plans to host various activities during Mandela Week, including doing some maintenance work at SOS Children’s Villages Port Elizabeth. Staff members will also be paying a visit to Livingstone Hospital, where they will hand out lunch packs to people in the waiting rooms.
The maintenance work at SOS Children Village PE will include electrical and plumbing work by the hotel’s maintenance team, some painting and the hotel’s kitchen staff will make a scrumptious soup for the children.
“The maintenance work is a cost saver for the village, as we would have to outsource at a significant cost. Since we do not have a handyman on staff, this helps us tremendously in our efforts to provide safe, secure, child-friendly homes for our children. We have 15 homes on our village, our village officially opened in 1992, so some maintenance is expected from time to time,” said Spies.