'Making a difference to someone you don't know is a big reward'
Helping others has always been part of Nate Padayachee's life
Building his business and supporting his family have been his biggest passion over the past 11 years, but Nathanael “Nate” Padayachee has never missed an opportunity to give back.
From charity drives to involvement in local feeding programmes, Padayachee shares his successes with his community.
Padayachee, who has his own car dealership — Nate’s Car Sales, in Amalinda, East London — tries to fill a gap and need where he sees it.
“We help animal shelters a lot, and do charity drives to collect food. We do back-to-school drives and sanitary towel drives. I've helped local artists make music videos, packed food hampers and donated food and joined feeding programmes over weekends too."
One of Padayachee's latest projects is raising funds for wheelchairs and walkers for people in need.
There's no better feeling in the world than knowing you're changing someone else's life, or even just giving them a little bit of hope, even just in that moment.
Easter weekend saw Padayachee and his family making food hampers and, with local charity organisation Feed a Family, handing them to children in Second Creek.
“Almost on a daily basis we try to do something or give something back. We try to identify the needs of people and charities and fill those needs whenever we can,” he said.
For him giving back was a way of life, he explained.
“I've always done it, from when I was a child. We spent our birthdays giving to kids on rubbish tips. There's no better feeling in the world than knowing you're changing someone else's life, or even just giving them a little bit of hope, even just in that moment.”
Padayachee was retrenched 11 years ago and has never forgotten what it was like having no income.
“Things didn't go our way. Our house was about to be taken away. We had no food. I know what it feels like to have nothing. During that time I also had to support my parents because my father had lost his business.
“From then on I always gave whatever I could, and I made sure, from the time I started Nate’s Car Sales, that I gave back to our community.”
He said the success of his business was not only his own or that of his staff, but was also meant for the community.
“Even now I tell my staff that we don't only work for ourselves. We work for all of our suppliers and the community. We do charity projects and drives all the time, trying to help at least 500 people every month so it's not only about us and our business. It's about the people it affects and those we can help.”
He said while Covid had given his business a huge knock, he was determined not to stop helping those in need.
We don't only work for ourselves. We work for all of our suppliers and the community.
'We lost a lot of money during Covid. It was scary and there were months when we barely made it through. But I'll never stop giving because that's what we're there for — that's what I'm there for — to make sure we fill that gap,” said Padayachee.
He said the most rewarding part was being able to make a difference — no matter how big or small.
“The reward of making a difference in someone's life is so amazing.
“To create that love and hope for someone you don't know — I think that keeps me motivated to keep going and to make a difference in this community and to inspire others to do the same,” said Padayachee.
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