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SPAR vows to continue fight against gender-based violence

SPAR Eastern Cape continues to support charity organisations through the Virtual Women’s Challenge, with the beneficiaries being Masimanyane and On Eagles’ Wings. At the recent launch were, from left, Jeanie Steyn (race ambassador), Mercy Cwayi (On Eagles’ Wings), SPAR EC promotions and events manager Alan Stapleton, Lesley Ann Foster (Masimanyane) and Yolanda Bukani (race ambassador)
THERE FOR WOMEN: SPAR Eastern Cape continues to support charity organisations through the Virtual Women’s Challenge, with the beneficiaries being Masimanyane and On Eagles’ Wings. At the recent launch were, from left, Jeanie Steyn (race ambassador), Mercy Cwayi (On Eagles’ Wings), SPAR EC promotions and events manager Alan Stapleton, Lesley Ann Foster (Masimanyane) and Yolanda Bukani (race ambassador)
Image: LEON HUGO

The SPAR Group continues to place its fight against gender-based violence (GBV) as one of its priorities, reaffirming its philosophy of community involvement.

SPAR Eastern Cape promotions and events manager Alan Stapleton said they took pride in serving and helping the communities in which they operated.

“Similarly, we believe in standing up for those who cannot do so for themselves, whether it be feeding schemes, charities, schools or the elderly,” he said.

“We also strongly believe in supporting those who are being abused or affected by violence.

“We want to continue our strong stand in the fight to end gender-based violence in our communities.”

People affected by GBV needed a voice but often did not have the avenues to reach out for help, he said.

“We are a trusted brand in our communities and a trusted friend to those in need.

We want to break the silence and strive to end GBV.

“We want to break the silence and strive to end GBV.”

In 2020, the Eastern Cape distribution centre in Nelson Mandela Bay made R50,000 in donations to the Rape Crisis Centre in Gqeberha and Masimanyane in East London.

In 2021, in support of Women’s Month, R120,000 was allocated to the Bet Sheekoom Centre.

The organisation — established because of the need for a long-term shelter for women to feel safe and receive counselling — has been working with those in crisis for 20 years.

SPAR EC has continued to back charity organisations involved in the fight against GBV by generating funds through a range of events.

The annual Penguin Classic Charity Golf Day presented an opportunity for SPAR EC to spend time with its retailers and suppliers in aid of charity.

The event fell in line with its mission statement of supporting national campaigns — with Jeffreys Bay-based On Eagles’ Wings one of the four beneficiaries.

Stapleton paid tribute to the organisation, which received a donation of R34 000 for its contribution to society.

“On Eagles’ Wings is about the community as they educate the public about GBV.”

Nationally, he said, SPAR also subsidised its house-brand sanitary pads down to R5 a pack to make this essential item more affordable to those in need.

On September 4, thousands of runners countrywide will set off on their own routes and distances for the SPAR Virtual Women’s Challenge.

The beneficiaries will all be organisations who stand up against GBE, and the Eastern Cape associations are Masimanyane and On Eagles’ Wings.

Masimanyane has developed into a worldwide movement fighting for women’s rights.

“We are essentially an equality and social justice organisation which is locally rooted but globally connected,” executive director Lesley Ann Foster said.

On Eagles’ Wings, under the leadership of Mercy Cwayi, has been operating in the Kouga municipality for 14 years.

“We have a multipurpose facility in Jeffreys Bay to assist those in need, providing services for women and children in counselling, socio-economic skills and shelter.”

At the Virtual Women’s Challenge launch in April, SPAR EC MD Angelo Swartz identified the retailer’s commitment to support women and families.

Our core values revolve around business, family, passion and entrepreneurship, and in that women and family play a massive role.

“Our core values revolve around business, family, passion and entrepreneurship, and in that women and family play a massive role,” he said.

“The Women’s Challenge is the epitome of what we see in supporting women in our community as we strive to bring families together.”

Swartz said as a brand it was important not to just pay lip service.

The company had invested heavily in supporting causes about issues affecting women and children.

In 2020, SPAR signed a memorandum of understanding with Lifeline SA, which runs the toll-free END-GBV Helpline.

The number is printed on SPAR shopping bags for easy access and can also be used to communicate with counsellors via WhatsApp.

Visit www.SPAR.co.za/gbv for more information or call the helpline on 0800-150-150.


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