Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair

by The sweethearts Foundation
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Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Help Gift Disabled South Africans a Wheelchair
Mrs Zeelie Gets Her Wheels
Mrs Zeelie Gets Her Wheels

The sweethearts Foundation has been around since 2013, that makes us 5 years old and in 5 years we've accomplished a lot. We couldn't have done it without the support of you, our generous donor, our friends and family, and most of all, our beneficiaries. 

The saying "One person's trash is another person's treasure" resonates with us on so many levels. Where someone might see a bottle top as nothing but waste, we see it as gold. Where one might see a bread tag as something that merely closes a loaf of bread, we see it as something that is going to change the life of someone else. 

Take for example, the story of Mrs Zeelie from the Eastern Cape, South Africa. Mrs Zeelie is a pensioner, who spends her days watching the outside world go-by. She does this from a chair in her lounge. Her husband, who is also a pensioner, helps her move around her home. She never leaves the house, because sadly, she's been waiting for a wheelchair for years. 

Mrs Zeelie had a need. It was a wheelchair. And thanks to you, her dream for a wheelchair became a reality. After years of patiently waiting, Mrs Zeelie can ride around in her very own wheelchair and experience the world she's been missing out on. 

It's as simple as collecting the lonely bottle top or bread tag on the floor and saving them for someone in need. 

Your continued donations are like the meaningless pieces of plastic people see lying on the floor, they are gold. Donations are 100% used to purchase the wheelchair for the little boy who needs one, or the little girl who has been waiting for years. Your generoisty knows no bounds and it helps people like Mrs Zeelie, who so desperately needed it. 

You are important. You are beautiful. You are a sweetheart!

Let's keep the wheels rolling!



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 It’s 2018, and we are rolling out the wheelchairs! As a 100% non-profit, every single cent donated towards our #Tops&Tags initiative is used to purchase wheelchairs for those in need. All our #Tops&Tags are recycled, and the proceeds from recycling are also used to purchase these much-needed wheelchairs.

It’s thanks to our enthusiastic, energetic and absolutely awesome sweethearts, like you, who continue to help us, support us and motivate us to give all that we can to those who need our help.

It’s been a couple months since we last had a report, so let’s #throwback to 2017 and see what’s been happening!

Last year, our sponsor, PNA – East London, fully funded and hosted their final three handovers for 2017. This means that they have handed over 5 wheelchairs in 5 months! We are truly thankful for their support and look forward to a truly prosperous relationship with them in the future!

 2017 was an absolutely amazing year for our foundation. We’re not telling a lie when we say we went from strength to strength. We had a mission, we had a goal, and we wanted it accomplished. One of the biggest issues we needed to resolve in 2017 was our Collection Points and our Collection Point map. After vetting over 140 Collection Points nationwide, we restarted our Collection Point map and it is growing by the day! The reasons for re-doing our Collection Points was two-fold, to ensure they can keep up with the high volume of #Tops&Tags being donated and to ensure that all our Collection Points were up and running effectively.

While sorting out our Collection Points, we made sure to find the time to give back to our community by taking part in Beach Clean-ups in the sunny city of Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape and to chat to school children about the importance of recycling, helping others and giving back to their communities!

 And then it hit us, it was December 2017. Where did the time go?! By this time, we were already gearing up for #GivingSeason through Global Giving and we were planning, strategizing and organizing our yearly Christmas campaign, the 12 Days of Christmas: Wheelchair Edition.

Our 12 Days of Christmas: Wheelchair Edition campaign was started in 2016 and in 2017 we boomed! We were completely overwhelmed with support and received donations from all around the world. One special sweetheart, who celebrated her 60th birthday, requested that all her guests donate money towards funding wheelchairs for our 12 Days of Christmas Campaign. There is truly nothing more special than receiving the gift of movement. 

Only 4 of our 10 beneficiaries were funded, but it is important to note that we were able to raise over R50 000.00 from donations. The money raised was spread equally among our 10 beneficiaries and we are now working towards funding the remaining 6 beneficiaries. Now we need to help Ronel, Daniel, Pamela, Nhlanhla and Nkonzo receive their wheelchairs. If you would like to donate towards helping these wonderful people receive the Gift of Movement, please follow this link: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/help-gift-disabled-south-africans-a-wheelchair/

And just like that, 2017 was over and 2018 began! 2018 started off in the best way, the funding from the 12 Days campaign was used to purchase the wheelchairs that had been fully funded and it was one handover after the next! First Kgaugelo, then Fabian, then little Angel and finally, Zayden!

These beneficiaries were absolutely overwhelmed with emotion when they received their wheelchairs and it is truly thanks to people like you, who continue to change the world and the lives of others. Thank you for being a sweetheart and helping us pay-it-forward and giving the Gift of Movement!

Fast forward to our very special day. The day where it all started. The sweethearts Foundation was established on the 14th of February 2013 and on this day, we handed over our first-ever wheelchair to Ms Dora Williams! On 14 February 2018, our foundation turned 5! It’s been a 5-year journey of happiness, love, compassion, giving and happy memories.

Thank you for being part of the magic, being part of our lives. We could not do the things we do without you, your support and your never-ending love. Keep being the changemaker you are and giving back to your community.

We’d love to hear what you think of our 5-year journey so far, please let us know by emailing us. If you think we’re doing something right or we should be doing something different, we’d love to hear what you, our most important people, think!

We can’t wait to hear from you.

Yours in wheels,

The sweethearts Foundation


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Vakele receiving his wheels
Vakele receiving his wheels

SWEETHEARTS KEEP ON GIVING!

As a 100% volunteer run, community based organization, we use all of our resources to Give the Gift of Movement to our beneficiaries. This is made possible by the hard work and dedication of our volunteers who run our foundation.

We love to get feedback on how we’re doing and notes of thanks! This really keep us going and trying to make this initiative bigger, better and more more sustainable!

It’s been a year since we’ve joined GlobalGiving and we’ve been told this is a “Fab cause!” and that "It is one of the most uniquely-sourced projects I'm aware of. To recycle something as simple as bottle caps and bread tags is such a wonderful idea. And it helps clean up the environment as well."

Thank you for these comments! We like to think that we are also building communities that are focused on working together to uplift those in desperate in need of help. Take Vakele, from a rural village in the Eastern Cape, for example. At the age of 80, he had lost hope that he would ever receive a wheelchair. Thanks to all the sweethearts, he no longer needs to worry about his lack of mobility. Taking care of the enviroment, providing wheelchairs and building stronger communities are a win-win-win for us!

Thank you to you, our generous donors who continue to help us realise the dreams of so many people. Thank you, a million times over!

YOUNG DONRY RECEIVES HIS MUCH-NEEDED WHEELCHAIR

In our very early years, we did what we could to help our beneficiaries receive the Gift of Movement and over time we’ve learnt new things to help us better assist those who are desperately in need. Several years ago, The sweethearts Foundation handed over a standard wheelchair to Donry, a young boy from Johannesburg. At the time, our volunteers knew very little about wheelchairs and slowly we began to realise the impact that receiving a wheelchair could have. When Donry received his wheelchair, we could see that we had made a mistake by issuing him with a wheelchair which was not suited to his needs. Sadly, we did not have the funds for a specialized wheelchair that he clearly needed and have always wanted to rectify our error.

Fast forward to 2017, we received a generous donation and with the efforts of our Tops and Tags initiative, where we collect bottle tops and bread tags which are recycled, we were able to fix our error and give Donry the perfect wheelchair. This would not have been possible without you! When Donry was fitted into his new wheelchair, all he could say was: “I like, I like, I like!”.

ALL-NEW COLLECTION POINTS

A massive revamp occurred between September and October 2017 which saw our volunteers hard at work fixing, updating and streamlining our Collection Point processes for the Tops and Tags.

With what started as a small initiative in Johannesburg has grown throughout South Africa and further afield. We are receiving hundreds of emails from sweethearts as far abroad as the United States, Middle East, Australia, and the UK wanting to collect Tops and Tags for us. We would truly love to accept your collections but are struggling to figure out the logistics of transporting large volumes of the Tops and Tags. All the funds we receive are used to buy much needed wheelchairs and we are not able to cover import duties and transport costs. We would recommend sending a sealed envelope (not more than 500g or 1 lb) to a Collection Point stating that “The contents are a gift and carry no monetary value.” Maybe slipping in a note of encouragement for the Collection Point volunteer would be a cool surprise for them to find – think message in a bottle!

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS CAMPAIGN

With Giving Tuesday just a few days away, we are hoping that you would consider us again as your chosen beneficiary. This would help kick start our next 12 Days of Christmas campaign.

Last year we started our 12 Days of Christmas campaign and highlighted four beneficiaries, Martha, Caleb, Basil and Dawn that needed wheelchairs. With your help we managed to raise over $3000 or R40 000 and fund all four, much-needed, wheelchairs. We were completely blown away by the response we received and this year, we aren’t holding back.

This year we are aiming to highlight 12 beneficiaries, ranging from young children to the elderly and they need your help. With a wheelchair we can help these beneficiaries get back to school or be able to work and become invaluable members of their community. Did you know that a many of the beneficiaries who have been helped in the past needed to be carried from place to place by a family member as they did not even have a basic wheelchair? This places a huge burden on those individuals and we need to help them!

So, what do you say? Will you help us help those who cannot help themselves? Will you be the change you want to see in the world?

Let’s be the change. Let’s give the Gift of Movement.

Donry with his new "BMW"
Donry with his new "BMW"
Sweethearts in action!
Sweethearts in action!

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The sweethearts Foundation aims to help underprivileged people receive the gift of movement in the form of a wheelchair. Our beneficiaries come from the most marginalised communities in South Africa and something as simple as a wheelchair is often out of their reach due to financial issues and long government backlogs. The sweethearts Foundation which gave away our first wheelchair on Valentine's Day 2013 is run completely by volunteers, who we endearingly call “sweethearts”. They are the ones who make the magic happen and help change the lives of our beneficiaries, as well as their families.

We love what we do, and we love that you're doing it with us! Thank you for giving someone the gift of movement!

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Joyful Joel!
Joyful Joel!

The sweethearts Foundation Project Update 

The sweethearts Foundation aims to help underprivileged people receive the gift of movement in the form of a wheelchair. Our beneficiaries come from the most marginalised communities in South Africa and something as simple as a wheelchair is often out of their reach due to financial issues and long government backlogs. The sweethearts Foundation which gave away our first wheelchair on Valentine's Day 2013 is run completely by volunteers, who we endearingly call “sweethearts”. They are the ones who make the magic happen and help change the lives of our beneficiaries, as well as their families.

Joel’s Wheelchair Handover

On Saturday, 13 May, we handed over a wheelchair to Joel, a diabetic who lost his leg due to a wire piercing his left foot. Joel, from Pretoria, South Africa, and a panel beater by trade, has been supporting the foundation by collecting bottle tops and bread tags for the past 2 years and had no idea that he himself would one day require a wheelchair. Due to unforeseen medical complications, Joel’s left leg had to be amputated below the knee.

Since receiving his new wheelchair, Joel has been able to return to work and is very happy with his new set of wheels.

Elsie receives her wheels!

Elsie, who lives in a retirement park in Johannesburg, South Africa recently received her new set of wheels! She was so delighted to have received this wheelchair and will help her move about since she has been struggling to get from place to place.

We are so thankful to have had the opportunity to handover this wheelchair to Elsie who too has been an avid collector of #TopsAndTags for The sweethearts Foundation.

WE WON THE GLOBALGIVING VIDEO OF THE YEAR 2017!!!

We recently won GlobalGiving’s Video of The Year competition and were showcased by GlobalGiving on their international platform. As a result of this amazing opportunity, we received additional funding from donors to the value of $1600! This would not have been possible without the wonderful community of Global Givers. We are truly humbled to have won and look forward to more exciting ventures in the future!

AND...

One of our beneficiaries, Martha from Cape Town, South Africa, has patiently been waiting to receive her wheels. Martha is in dire need of an electronic wheelchair as she suffers from severe arthritis. If this wasn't tough enough, Martha’s leg was amputated due to medical malpractice a number of years ago. Martha has completely forgiven the staff at the hospital where this happened and only asked that they learn from their mistakes to ensure this does not happen to someone else. Isn't Martha AMAZING!!!!???

Since the cost of electronic wheelchairs are very high we rely on special fundraisers to help beneficiaries in need such as Martha.

We are pleased to announce that with the donations we've received from the GlobalGiving community we have now fully funded Martha’s electronic wheelchair and are busy organising a wheelchair handover for her! But wait… It’s a surprise! Shhhhh!!!! Keep this news TOP SECRET!! We can’t wait to see Martha’s reaction once she receives her gift!

 

We wish Joel, Elsie and our other beneficiaries safe travels in their new wheels. A huge thank you to all our volunteers and donors for supporting our little foundation!

Have a wonderful day sweethearts, you're changing lives!

 

Love,

The sweethearts

xxx

 

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK TO SEE MORE UPDATES

  • To follow all the action, subscribe to our Facebook Page www.facebook.com/sweetheartsfoundation. This is our primary method of sending all our updates.
  • Please consider donating again in future to help us continue changing lives like Joel, Elsie and Martha. We believe that the wheelchair is a basic human right and that anyone who needs one, should have one, simple!
  • Help us give the gift of movement to those in need. We have a waiting list full of people who are desperately in need and we’d love to give them the very special gift of movement.
Elsie
Elsie
Martha
Martha

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Organization Information

The sweethearts Foundation

Location: Johannesburg, Gauteng - South Africa
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @wheelchair4love
Project Leader:
Leigh Ferreira
Johannesburg, South Africa
$4,843 raised of $10,000 goal
 
121 donations
$5,157 to go
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