PRETORIA, South Africa — About 12,000 employees joined together last week to tackle more than 200 community projects on six continents during the eighth annual Ford Global Week of Caring.
Employees from more than 25 countries were out in force from 7 to 15 September.
More than 486 employees from Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) participated in the initiative, spending close to 3888 hours in their efforts to provide a better world for all.
Volunteers from both the Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria and the Struandale Engine Plant in Port Elizabeth ventured into their communities to provide much needed assistance.
“Ford South Africa employees tell us they’re thankful to work for a company that encourages and supports their desire to make a difference in their communities,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “It is gratifying to see how our Ford employees are eager to jump in, and the impact of their many contributions.”
This year’s theme for Global Week of Caring was water. Despite being a basic human need over 1.5 billion people around the world don’t have access to clean and safe water.
One of the projects Ford employees visited this year was the Thipe Primary School in Hammanskraal. The community has in the past experienced a limited supply of water with the residents having to walk several kilometres to the nearest water source.
In the spirit of Global Week of Caring, FMCSA donated R30,000 towards the installation of a roundabout which has been specifically designed to pump water from a borehole as the children play on it. “We are so grateful for the clean water as well as for all the assistance from Ford,” the school Principal Mr Motaung said. “As a result the community will now have much needed access to water.”
Among various other activities Ford staff also participated in a clean-up operation at the Moreleta Spruit. In addition to general maintenance of the area the project involved controlled burning of Spanish Reed, an invasive plant species. This gives the indigenous plants a chance to grow. The project was supported by the City of Tshwane.
Luvuyo Special School in Motherwell caters for 56 learners with physical or mental learning disabilities. As part of the Global Week of Caring, a hot water geyser was fitted for the first time, along with associated plumbing, repairs to windows, electrical work and fittings, as well as the planting of trees. A computer was also donated to the facility, and the learners given a party with lunch, snacks and treats.
“The Global Week of Caring is a Ford initiative that allows staff to get involved with the community and make a difference,” says Jeff Nemeth, FMCSA president and CEO. “Once again our employees truly embraced the programme. Everyone enjoyed a fantastic week getting involved with and helping local communities. This was the most successful Global Week of Caring in South Africa to date, with great accomplishments made.”