Franchises help communities – and not only on Mandela Day


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Mandela Day

Community-based franchises are in a unique position to help their local communities, and there is no better time for this than on Mandela Day – 18 July, 2019. Franchises throughout the year help their local youth sports teams, schools and clubs in many ways – often without bragging about it.

Mandela Month should be taken as an opportunity to publicise all you do, either through emailed newsletters, instore promotions or social media, This international day of philanthropy has grown into a worldwide event: it is inspired by a speech given by Mandela on 27 June 2008 (his 90th birthday celebration) in London’s Hyde Park. In this address, Madiba called on leaders of all nations to help change the world for the better.

In another iconic speech by Nelson Mandela during his State of the Nation address, Parliament, Cape Town, South Africa, on 5 February 1999 he said: “The foundation has been laid – the building is in progress. With a new generation of leaders and a people that rolls up its sleeves in partnerships for change, we can and shall build the country of our dreams!”

Mandela Day: fighting hunger

We also need a dream. Nelson Mandela had a dream for South Africa and, during the 1990s, that dream became embodied in the country’s new constitution. Few sectors are more closely linked to their local communities than Individual franchise businesses, from which they derive most of their business. As hunger is a focus of Mandela Month, franchises have long been at the forefront of the Mandela Day initiative – whether it be handing out gifts of food and refreshments, or going out to deprived townships to construct desperately needed toilets – as a thank you to their communities which support them throughout the year.

Hunger remains the greatest challenge facing South Africa, and approximately 56% of franchise stores are involved in the food or retail convenience industries (excluding petrol), and are therefore well-positioned to assist.

As we move through July, the month of Madiba’s birthday and of Nelson Mandela International Day, there are any number of activities available to those who have not planned their own campaign.

Franchises at work

Typical of the work that franchising companies undertake, Corner Bakery SA distributed delicious Pie Bites to the kids of the Domino Foundation, a non-profit organisation based in Durban North. The Pie Bites will be distributed to their relief beneficiary network which serves disadvantaged learners who would otherwise have little access to food.

Another franchise, Drain Surgeon, was one of eight plumbing companies to spend the morning of Mandela Day in Diepsloot Extension 1 fixing toilets, doors and taps. Each toilet in Diepsloot serves 39 families, each averaging five family members. Consequently, they are overused and in disrepair.

The Mandela Day event was part of the annual outreach Community Plumbing Challenge 2019. According to Obed Kekae, executive of Wassup, and acronym for Water Amenities Sanitation Services Upgrade Programme, which is a dedicated volunteer and non-profit organisation, eight teams participated in the event. The eight teams were: SNS plumbing; Drain Surgeon; AJC Plumbing; Peaceful Scapes; ASC Plumbing; Thomas Mohelo; Burgess Plumbing; and Plumbston Plumbing. Plumblink brought materials, while the landscaping team did some landscaping around the eight toilets.

Tiger Wheel & Tyre’s head office collected items from staff including a stove and food items and donated them to a home in Ebony Park. Twenty staff were on hand on Mandela Day to give the residents a braai.

We all recognise our duty to heed the call of the Mandela Day campaign and take responsibility for transforming our societies. The campaign is inspired by a dream.  It is geared to making a difference in practical ways, big and small. Let’s all remember Madiba this month by working hard and honouring his dream.