Webcom’s year-end CSI functions raise spirits

The Webcom Group, an Information Communication Technology (ICT) organisation that delivers end-to-end products and solutions, recently held end-of-year functions for two of the organisations it regularly supports – Abangani Enkosini and St Mary’s Orphanage.

A day at the zoo

On the 21st of November 2009, Webcom arranged an outing at the Johannesburg Zoo for the children from Abangani Enkosini (also known as Alexandra Children’s Haven), an organisation in Alexandra, Johannesburg that provides shelter, care, nourishment and support to orphans and vulnerable children.

Staff met up with the children at buses that were organised and travelled to the Zoo with the children. Rainy weather did not dampen spirits, and once umbrellas had been obtained, the children were divided into groups of ten and each assigned a Webcom staff member who took them on a tour of the Zoo.

Afterwards, they enjoyed a picnic and were given gift packs. This year, Webcom decided to provide stationary packs, according to the requirements of each child’s grade.

Says Jackie Stapelberg, who is part of Webcom’s CSI committee: “It was a wonderful day and everybody had lots of fun. We felt that the smaller groups worked well, giving us a chance to bond with the kids and answer their questions about the animals. I don’t know who was more tired at the end of the day – us or the kids”

Started by Portia Mongake ten years ago, the shelter has grown to include 10 volunteers that assist in looking after 500 children and obtaining food and basics such as clothing when possible.

Says Mongake: “It really was a day none of us will ever forget. Aside from the fun the children had, the stationery packs they received will make a big difference to them when they start school in January. Most of them have never owned a calculator, for example, so they are very excited. Webcom really goes all out to make a difference to the lives of each one of the 500 kids at Abangani Enkosi”.

A much-needed ‘spruce-up’

Webcom staff also recently visited the St Mary’s Children’s Home in Rosettenville to do an overall clean-up and fix-up of the premises. The orphanage, home to approximately 40 children, is a non-profit organisation caring for children from families in crisis. The orphanage building is over 100 years old and in desperate need of repair.

Webcom regularly supports the home throughout the year with various initiatives, and recently decided to make a day of fixing up the building. A general site inspection was done by staff members to establish what areas needed attention. On the morning of the 28th of November 2009, staff arrived, armed with a host of tools, and embarked on a day’s work of mowing lawns, changing light bulbs, fixing door handles, gardening and general cleaning up.

Afterwards, the children joined staff for a braai on the lawns and were given gifts packs. Comments Sonja Harmse, Director of the St Mary’s Children’s Home: “Webcom really are the dearest friends this home has. Aside from the wonderful work they do, they make a big effort to interact with the children, which makes them feel special. We really appreciate everything they’ve done for us”.

Says Stapelberg, “There is still a lot of work to be done at the orphanage, which is why we have committed to a full-scale revamp of the home in 2010.

We are organising support from other sponsors to assist with the more specialised work that the building requires”.

Webcom commits to ongoing support of a number of organisations and charities. Comments Glen Miller, CEO of The Webcom Group, “We aim to not only hand out donations to the organisations that we support, but to also get actively involved and understand their unique challenges in order to provide ongoing assistance to them throughout the year. As the festive season commences, we feel it is important to do something special for these organisations that are reliant on sponsors for assistance.”

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Webcom’s year-end CSI functions raise spirits