The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) Spouses Forum recently hosted a breakfast for the Goodwill Parcel Project (GWPP) 2019.
The SANDF Spouses Forum held the GWPP Hamper breakfast today, 11 October, at the Department of Defence Logistics Support Formation in Lyttelton, Pretoria, to thank sponsors and announce the accomplishments of the GWPP in assisting families and spouses of deployed soldiers.
The GWPP was able to create 4 500 hampers through the support of a host of companies from various industries in South Africa. The hampers are set to be distributed to the families and spouses of the soldiers currently deployed internally and externally, over the festive season.
The programme director of the SANDF Spouses Forum stated that the value of these hampers has grown significantly over the years, from R60 to now over R500. The hamper included shampoos, soaps, creams, shower gels, tinned foods, maize snacks and meals, tea, coffee, juices, salt, sugar, custard, sweets, cereals and more.
Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, was in attendance and in her speech, stated that she will continue to support the SANDF Spouses Forum and GWPP as well as the work they do in supporting families and spouses of the SANDF, going onto say that, “You may not be the one who wears the medals, but you are the one who often puts them on and makes sure they [members of the SANDF] leave the house looking good.”
The honourable Mapisa-Nqakula went onto thank sponsors in saying that the GWPP would not have been able to go as far as they have without the sponsors.
Mapisa-Nqakula also took the time to announce that there will be a new military ombudsman, General Vusumuzi Masondo, starting 1 November 2019. The SANDF today also announced a raft of new appointments from next month, including a new Chief of the Army, Joint Operations Division, SA Military Health Service and Chief of Staff.
The hampers will be internally handed out in November and externally later in November/December. The SANDF has 15 companies deployed internally on border protection and soldiers serving in the Democratic Republic of Congo with the UN mission there.
While the GWPP raises funds to financially assist families of the SANDF, they introduced a family hamper gift which is delivered to families of the deployed soldiers during the festive season as a token of gratitude to the families.
The GWPP held a gala evening in mid-September 2019 that saw R1.3 million being pledged by various sponsors and donors.
Chief of the SA Army, Lieutenant General Lindile Yam, along with many SANDF VIPs, were in attendance during the breakfast today and in speaking on boarder control, Yam stated that the SANDF will continue with the border control operation Corona. “What is important is the integration, a poignant integration, of the different departments that are active on the borders, particularly home affairs.”
Members of the public who would like to donate or contribute to the initiative can call SANDF Spouses Forum chairperson, Charlotte Shoke, on 072 474 1167.