Oh our giddy aunts - you won't believe - we have 5 sets of double…
Hello Joburgers, even as developments in South African healthcare have seen the country’s child mortality rates steadily decreasing, there are still far too many children losing their lives to preventable illnesses. This is largely due to understaffing, inaccurate data collection and vaccination education to communities.
According to research by Statistics SA in 2015, for every 1000 live births recorded in South Africa, about 33 infants die at birth and up to 40 children die before they reach five years of age.
In an effort to give all South Africa’s children a fighting chance against illness and disease, Nedbank has launched its #VaxTheNation initiative in support of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund programmes aimed at meeting development goals that address the needs of children. The initiative is Nedbank’s rallying call to all South Africans to come together to get the country’s children vaccinated against the potentially devastating, but totally preventable, symptoms of the most prevalent viruses and diseases.
According to Khensani Nobanda, Group Executive for Nedbank Group Marketing and Corporate Affairs, Nedbank’s #VaxTheNation movement aligns with global and national commitments to child survival encompassed in both the UN Sustainable Development Goals and South Africa’s National Development Plan.
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“Historical evidence provided by Statistics SA and the Institute of Race Relations points to the leading causes of death among South Africa’s children as being tuberculosis, HIV and other viral diseases,” Nobanda explains, “and medical experts largely agree that a comprehensive child vaccine regime can be highly effective in combatting many of these preventable causes of tragic child deaths.”
Nobanda explains that the Nedbank #VaxTheNation initiative makes it easy for anyone to respond to this call, at no financial cost to them. “In addition to asking people to help raise awareness about the importance of vaccinations by spreading the #VaxTheNation hashtag and message, we’re asking South Africans to simply link their existing or new Nedbank Current Account to the Nedbank Children’s Affinity,” she explains. “All money raised through the Affinity donations that Nedbank makes on behalf of these clients, will go to the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, to be put towards vital community education and support programmes aimed at making sure thousands more of the country’s most vulnerable children receive life-saving vaccinations.”
The launch of Nedbank’s #VaxTheNation initiative coincides with the bank’s recent partnership with international advocacy organisation Global Citizen, which will be bringing the concert-style Global Citizen Festival to Africa for the first time on 2 December this year. The festival, which will be taking place in Johannesburg, includes international and local superstar acts and combines a celebration of Nelson Mandela’s centenary year with the organisation’s focus on building a movement of 100 million action-taking individuals to collectively help put an end to extreme poverty by 2030.
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Nobanda explains that this connection with Tata Madiba’s legacy aligns perfectly with Nedbank’s long-standing relationship with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund through the Nedbank Children’s Affinity. “Children had a very special place in the heart of Madiba,” she says, “so our #VaxTheNation initiative is another way of honouring the great man’s legacy by supporting a cause that meant so much to him.”
As part of the #VaxTheNation launch, Nedbank is also offering existing and new Nedbank Children’s Affinity linked current account holders the opportunity to win double tickets to the Global Citizen Festival. While tickets are free – they can only be earned by downloading the Global Citizen App and meeting the requirements to take action on issues of health, nutrition, education, gender equality, water and sanitation and poverty.
“As a bank with a stated purpose to use our financial expertise to do good, Nedbank believes that ensuring the protection and survival of South Africa’s children should be a key strategic focus area for all organisations, and indeed all South Africans,” Nobanda concludes. “Thanks to #VaxTheNation it has never been easier for everyone to respond meaningfully to the needs of our nation’s children and help ensure their survival and healthy development.”
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Hello Joburg was first published in April 1980 as a monthly restaurant and entertainment magazine. Over the years we have developed a network of patriotic Joburgers that love nothing more than sharing their experiences in this beautiful city!