Gift of new wheels has trio on move

Purchasing manager for Spar Eastern Cape Alan Stapleton and Daily Dispatch marketing manager Jennilee Peremore-Oliver pose with Spar Daily Dispatch Summer Fun Run beneficiaries Angelo Walker, Litha Soldati and Elroy Fortune, who all received new wheelchairs on Monday.
ALL SMILES: Purchasing manager for Spar Eastern Cape Alan Stapleton and Daily Dispatch marketing manager Jennilee Peremore-Oliver pose with Spar Daily Dispatch Summer Fun Run beneficiaries Angelo Walker, Litha Soldati and Elroy Fortune, who all received new wheelchairs on Monday.
Image: MICHAEL PINYANA

Three excited beneficiaries received the gift of mobility on Monday morning as Spar and the Daily Dispatch handed over specialised wheelchairs to them.

The handover was made possible by funds raised at the 2018 Spar Daily Dispatch Summer Fun Run, which saw 2,500 participants enjoy a walk, run or ride along the Esplanade in East London in November.

Over R25,000 was raised for beneficiaries at the wheelchair-friendly race.

On Monday, car accident survivor, Elroy Fortune, 55, and Angelo Walker, 25, and Litha Soldati, 18, who both live with cerebral palsy, received the new wheelchairs.

The initiative’s fourth beneficiary, 13-year-old Abanathi Mbono, who was also earmarked to receive a wheelchair, died in April.

The beneficiaries were all chosen via The Sweet Hearts Foundation, a company whose mission is to provide wheelchairs to those who need them most.

“Disability doesn’t mean inability, and each year we have a large group of people with disabilities taking part in the run,” said Daily Dispatch marketing manager Jennilee Peremore-Oliver.

Fortune, whose right leg was amputated after a car accident, said: “I thank God that I am still alive and I thank each and every person who made this possible. To me it has demonstrated so much love.”

Martinette Faure, manager of His Hands Care Centre where Soldati is cared for, said the new wheelchair would change her and her family’s lives.

“The new specialised wheelchair will make it much easier for her to move around and her family to transport her,” said Faure.

Daily Dispatch sales manager Suren Packery said the 2018 Fun Run was a massive success with double the amount of participants compared with 2017, and that he hoped this year’s run would be just as inspiring and exciting.

“The raw sense of joy that was seen by all the disabled athletes that took part was amazing,” said Packery.

“I hope that our relationship with Spar and all the corporates that make this race possible each year will continue to grow and that the race remains a success.”

This year’s Spar Daily Dispatch Fun Run will take place on September 8, welcoming spring in a fun and colourful event.

madeleinec@dispatch.co.za

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