Bursaries and boreholes - helping in the healthcare space
The partnership between Gift of the Givers and Bonitas Medical Fund has, and will continue, to have a positive impact in a quintet of interventions in the field of healthcare. The partnership, which began in 2018 continues into 2024, with an additional investment of R3.3 million. This includes bursaries to final year medical students at the University of KwaZulu Natal and the provision of boreholes at various health facilities across the country.
Lee Callakoppen, Principal Officer of Bonitas says, 'the association with Gift of the Givers goes back a few years, when we supported various projects on an ad hoc basis. The partnership is aimed at identifying health related projects being undertaken by the Gift of the Givers to which Bonitas can add value.'In 2022, we aligned our CSI initiatives to our mantra: 'A Medical Aid for South Africa'. The purpose: To provide relief to the most vulnerable and marginalised communities, specifically in the field of healthcare interventions. We wanted to assist in the social upliftment of South Africans, particularly in the healthcare space. And who better to partner with than this leading philanthropic organisation in the country.'
'Gift of the Givers continues to go beyond the call of duty to bring humanitarian aid where needed. It has built its reputation on the principles we, as a corporate citizen, also value: Respect, care, professionalism and dedication. We are proud to be partnering with them once again.'
Bursaries for 6th year medical students. Eight medical students in their 6th and final year of study at the University of KwaZulu Natal, will receive bursaries. The bursaries cover outstanding and current fees, enabling them to complete their final year of medicine and graduate as a doctor at the end of 2024. The students were selected based on their academic results and financial needs and were vetted by the University as promising students in need. They are also diverse in terms of the background and locations, with a strong desire to enhance the healthcare landscape in South Africa.
Boreholes at healthcare facilities
Water is the gift of life and no more so than in a healthcare setting. It is essential to run a medical facility - whether it's a hospital or clinic or the communities around them. Critical shortages of water are hindering the provision of quality healthcare in a number of public healthcare facilities. Six hospitals and clinics have been identified, by Gift of the Givers in partnership with Bonitas, as being in urgent need of water interventions. They are located in the Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KZN and Free State and the healthcare facilities include a psychiatric hospital, general hospitals, clinics and an orphanage. The due date for completion on these projects is April 2024.
Dr Imtiaz Sooliman says, 'All the projects we have partnered with Bonitas on have been a great success and we look forward to continuing working with them. In fact, soon after our staff became members of Bonitas in 2019, we knew there was synergy in our ethos, that a collaboration in the healthcare space with the Fund would be a success. 'We are in the fortunate position of having the relationships in place to actively execute the necessary healthcare interventions, together with Bonitas. We are thrilled at the success of this continued partnership.'
An overview of the most recent projects
Celebrating our nurses
In collaboration with Gift of the Givers, Bonitas honoured 470 nurses at the Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Hospital in KZN in recognition of International Nurse's Day. Nurses remain the backbone of the healthcare system and this gesture was to show appreciation for their exceptional service, especially in very trying times, such as the Covid-19 pandemic - when the entire healthcare environment was under enormous pressure.After the floods in KZN
Bonitas responded to the disaster relief calls for assistance after the floods in KZN and donated R500k to Gift of the Givers to assist in rebuilding damaged healthcare facilities in the region. The gift of hearing This year Bonitas sponsored an Audiology Programme, in KZN which looked at testing the hearing of over 15 860 learners, at various schools during the year. ‘Children’s learning is substantially compromised with hearing difficulties, reducing the possibility for progress and achievement,'' said Dr Imtiaz Sooliman. 'Appropriate, early intervention is critical to make a meaningful impact on the academic development of the learner.'
Disaster relief conference Bonitas was a key sponsor in the Disaster relief conference held in Cape Town earlier this year. The conference, the largest of its kind in the world, was attended by various stakeholders responsible for community upliftment and healthcare delivery.Callakoppen says, 'They say the best partnerships aren't dependent on a mere common goal but on a shared path of equality, desire and no small amount of passion. Both Gift of the Givers and Bonitas have the drive to help others. And, in terms of the Fund, moving a step closer to providing quality healthcare for all South Africans