The Goodwill Project, an SANDF Spouses Forum initiative, has this year raised R6.8 million that will be used to bring some festive season cheer to airmen, medics, sailors and soldiers deployed in mission areas continentally and locally.
This is the project’s 14th year and Angel Ramphele, chairman of the civilian side of the initiative, told a recent gala function that R6.8 million had been collected from various sponsors and partners brought aboard by the Spouses Forum, headed by Charlotte, wife of SANDF Chief General Solly Shoke.
The money will see the more than five thousand SA National Defence Force members who will be doing duty over the coming festive season getting some Christmas cheer in the form of gift packs and food hampers for the families of servicemen deployed away from home.
This year amount is significantly higher than the R5.5 million the Goodwill Project collected last year.
Traditionally the gift packs have been delivered by a Spouses Forum delegation that travels to where South African military personnel are deployed. As was the case last year, this year will again see soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Sudan receive their gifts whether they are at a major military base such as Goma or manning a remote observation post in either country.
Soldiers deployed as part of Operation Corona (border protection) will also be visited and handed gift packs at either their fixed or temporary bases on South Africa’s borders with Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.
The SA Navy Operation Copper deployment in the form of a ship’s company in the Mozambique Channel are also on the Project Goodwill gift list.
Indications are the over five thousand men and women in uniform will receive the fruits of Project Goodwill sometime between the third week of December and the end of the first week of January next year.
Final details of what the gift packs will contain and the delivery schedule were not available at the time of publication.