In celebration of Nelson Mandela's 94th birthday on the 18th of July this year, GraphicMail is contributing its digital marketing resources to "Cheesekids", one of South Africa's most significant community-service NPO's.
Instead of dedicating the traditional 67 minutes of service on the day - GraphicMail will be gifting Cheesekids with triple the benefits they are already receiving through the email and mobile service provider's standard non-profit offering, for no less than six months.
In the words of Shaka Sisulu, founding member of Cheesekids: "We're just a couple of young folk doing what we can to make our world better by putting our time and our backs into various communities that could do with a little hand."
"Our work is to provide opportunity for young South Africans, particularly those of privileged backgrounds, to participate in community service. We started out as a group that grew on social media channels, but soon the need for an organised email communication strategy aroused. After trying a number of platforms we came across GraphicMail and haven't looked back since. It allows us to send targeted messaging in either email or SMS format and helps us create online portals to lead our audience to. Best of all, we can track who is receiving and using our communications."
"This year we are mobilizing 6,700 young people to do community service in different parts of the country. We constantly need to communicate with this base of volunteers through a reliable service and that's why we use GraphicMail."
"Almost every month there is a new feature or functionality that we discover and quickly begin to use. The ease of use of the program as well as its flexibility make it a joy to work with. We are currently doing some integration work with our new website and are finding that it's remarkably simple. I think that partnering with GraphicMail has been one of our better business choices," Shaka concluded.
Shaka is himself the perfect example of how much good you can do when you use your privilege for the benefit of society. Not only is he the "Big Cheese" behind Cheesekids for Humanity; in continuing the legacy of the great Sisulu family, 32-year-old Sisulu is an Archbishop Tutu Leadership Fellow, and sits on the advisory council of the Public Sector Excellence Awards and the boards of both LoveLife and the Foundation for a Safer South Africa.
In 2007, after building houses through Habitat for Humanity, Sisulu and his friends found themselves wanting to do more. In formalising their growing volunteer "movement", Sisulu created Cheesekids as a fun, accessible political platform for youth to give back. With the tagline "Love, peace and mo' cheese", Cheesekids enables like-minded, privileged youth (those who have "cheese") to pay it forward to those less fortunate through a range of programs, from painting classrooms, building houses and cleaning gardens to spending time with children who are in need of care and attention. Sisulu's approach of making community service "cool" has certainly proven to be successful: of Cheesekids' 8500 member volunteers, half come back to help again, along with their friends.
If you would like to get involved with Cheesekids to contribute, start a local chapter, or if have any ideas or suggestions - please contact Shaka Sisula at:
GraphicMail is also no newcomer to charitable giving. The company recently sponsored the Cape Town-based community service start-up "Picture the Possibility" with a free NPO account, and its support for Non-profits has been recognised internationally, with the prestigious Marketing Sherpa 2011 Email Award for their 2010 Susan G. Komen Global Race for the Cure email campaign.
To apply for the freeNon-profit email marketing service, registered NPO's can fill in the online form on GraphicMail's website. Once you're a member of our Non-Profit program, GraphicMail lets you send up to 10,000 free emails per month.