SPAR Eastern Cape’s female employees used their annual internal ladies’ day not to pamper themselves but to give back to the community by spending the day at two underprivileged crèches in Nelson Mandela Bay on Friday.
The 95 women divided themselves between the Lilitha Crèche in Veeplaas and the Sonwabile Educare Centre in New Brighton, where they entertained the children, cooked them a meal and left behind a variety of educational materials and toys.
Speaking at the New Brighton event, SPAR EC human resources officer Uonella Ntsebeza said it was very important for the company to assist organisations in the communities in which it operated.
“As women we are caregivers, so for us this just fits naturally. I think this is typical of women – to do something for other people.”
Ntsebeza said a lot of work had gone into planning the day, with every employee involved in coming up with ideas for themes and activities.
The 110 children at the New Brighton crèche were treated to facepainting, a jumping castle and mini-Olympics, as well as a visit from Trolley Man, before enjoying hamburgers and party packs in the colourfully draped school hall.
“At the end of the day, they received back sacks with colouring books, crayons, lunch tins, juice bottles and other items to contribute towards their education.”
According to her, the little ones were mostly raised in single-parent families or by their grandmothers, who relied on the child support grant as their sole source of income.
“We just wanted to make it a really fun day for the kids. The reward we got from seeing them smiling and happy was just priceless.”
Sonwabile Educare Centre principal Zoliswa Nkwalase said she felt very blessed by the supermarket giant’s involvement and looked forward to an ongoing partnership.
“Going forward, we’re hoping to assist the school in any way that we can,” said Ntsebeza.
SPAR EC creditors manager Zelda le Roux said she and her fellow employees had been incredibly touched and humbled by the experience.
“It really gives you perspective and makes you realise that you’ve got enough, so now it’s about finding ways to give back.”
Every year, the SPAR EC ladies’ day is held as close to National Women’s Month as company schedules allow.
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SPAR 2: SPAR Eastern Cape’s female employees visited two underprivileged crèches as part of their internal ladies’ day celebrations on Friday. Here SPAR EC staff member Nokulunga Majenge (right) shares bubbles of fun with one of the cute Sonwabile Educare Centre learners in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth. Photographer: Photo: Richard Huggard