Continuing to fulfil their mission of making a difference wherever they go and helping to uplift and transform people and communities through their daily work, teams of Women in Action (WiA), devoted more than 67 minutes to Madiba's memory on Mandela Day 2014. These women, whose husbands are pastors with the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God (UCKG), are involved in numerous ongoing initiatives countrywide to educate, support and empower people about cancer, human trafficking, and abuse, amongst many other projects.
On Mandela Day, a team of "pink ladies" as Women in Action are known, arrived at the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital to give cleaners a well-deserved break. Donning their gloves, and with buckets, mops, brooms and other cleaning materials, they gave the waiting area a spring clean, leaving it smelling fresh and looking sparkling. They also donated a set of sofas for the area enabling patients to sit and wait in relative comfort.
The team of ladies who volunteer at CHOC in Johannesburg, Soweto and Pretoria, did something different this year, choosing to help the children prepare cards to show their love and appreciation for their parents and their empathy and concern for other patients. This idea was received with great enthusiasm by the children who were delighted to write a card for someone else who was sick in the wards. Mothers came to ask if there was a card for their child while others asked for cards for children whose mother was not there. It was a very moving experience for all involved.
Women in Action in Pretoria visited the Kids Victory Care Centre, a home for disabled children and aged people in Kligat, Mabopane. The centre is home for eleven mentally challenged children and five older people with special needs. WiA spent the day cleaning, washing and organising the home. The home was really glad, saying that they had never had a group of people coming to clean for them and spend time, as people usually drop off donations and leave.
The team in Bloemfontein and Lesotho spent time at a shelter in Katlehong where cancer patients stay while they are receiving treatment as it is not feasible to return home after every session, so they have to stay near the hospital until their treatment has been completed. The "pink ladies" prepared kits of a toothbrush, toothpaste, soap and a facecloth as a gift for them, but they also spent time with each patient giving them a spa day of pampering with back and hand massages. They also decorated their area.
The Durban team spent time at the Othandweni Children's Home. This home has six different cottages where orphans ranging from between six and seventeen years of age are housed. Each house accommodates 12 -14 children. WiA helped with the laundry, doing the washing and ironing, as this was the area where most help was needed. They also cooked a delicious meal for the staff and spent some time playing with the children - a difference was certainly made!
In East London, the WiA team spent time with the patients of ward J2 at the Frere Hospital, teaching them the basics of beading and crocheting and playing games with them. The purpose was to teach them skills which they could use to start a small business when they leave hospital, as well as highlight the importance of engaging in relaxing activities while they are in hospital. The patients learned how to make to make jerseys, dolls, scarfs and hats and were inspired and surprised by their ability to create things.
WiA's Save a Tamar counsellors, who devote themselves to helping victims of abuse break the silence and start the journey to recovery, prepared hampers of toiletries, cosmetics and hygiene products which were given to the Women and Men Against Child Abuse (WMACA) Kidz Clinic headquarters in Randburg. There are homes in Alexandra, Soweto and Pretoria where abused children are taken in and cared for. The hampers are essential when attending to victims of rape and abuse, but sadly are often in short supply. WiA also donated nappies for the babies and spent time with the WMACA team, an organisation they work closely with throughout the year.
While many people respond to the call to engage in social responsibility projects for 67 minutes on Mandela Day, for Women in Action, serving others is a way of life, making every day a Mandela Day. Once again the "pink ladies" demonstrated the importance of giving back to the community and in making that difference through simple acts of kindness which make the recipient forget their challenging circumstances, even for a moment. Women in Action live by their motto of: Educate, Support and Empower.
For further information, please contact Nametso Mofokeng at the church's public relations department on 011 224 3400 or
The Universal Church of the Kingdom of God (UCKG) is a contemporary, evangelical, Bible-based church, actively involved in numerous national outreach projects caring for people's spiritual, emotional and physical needs.
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