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South Africa: Focussing on Keeping SA Children Safe
Source: SA - the Good News
Source Date: Thursday, November 14, 2013
Focus: Institution and HR Management
Country: South Africa
Created: Nov 14, 2013

Accidents do happen, but in South Africa a child has 25 times more chance of ending up in hospital due to trauma or an accident compared to a child in the UK. Often these preventable accidents can have a devastating effect on a child’s life, with far-reaching consequences on the child’s prospect for good health, education and social inclusion.
“These are the reasons Sea Harvest has chosen to support Childsafe South Africa with our Kids-for-Kids Campaign this year,” said Felix Ratheb, Sea Harvest’s CEO Designate, who will be taking over the reigns in January. Sea Harvest is South Africa’s leading black-empowered commercial fishing company that provides local, sustainably caught hake.
Childsafe SA is a non-profit organisation, based at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital that assists in reducing and preventing child-related injuries of all severities through research, education, environmental change, community engagement and recommendations for legislation change. “The organisation, one of the oldest in SA, has grown to a point where they require more adequate space and infrastructure to accommodate their training and educational activities and increase the organisation’s capacity to address the serious issue of child-related accidents,” said Ratheb.
“Sea Harvest kids want to help keep other South African children safe, and we want to support the largest, stand-alone tertiary hospital dedicated to children in Southern Saharan Africa,” said Ratheb. “Consequently, Sea Harvest’s Kids-for-Kids Campaign has pledged to raise R350,000 towards building the new dedicated Childsafe Research and Educational Centre at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital,” he said.
The Kids-for-Kids campaign kicks off in November and will run until February next year. “During the campaign,” said Ratheb, “a portion of the sale price of crumbed Sea Harvest products will go towards this wonderful cause.
Louise Driver, CEO of the Children’s Hospital Trust - the organisation tasked with raising funds for the Red Cross Children’s Hospital and Paediatric Healthcare in the Western Cape - said: “We are delighted that Sea Harvest has once again chosen the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital as the beneficiary of the Kids-for-Kids Campaign.”
“Since 2010, Sea Harvest’s Kids-for-Kids Campaign has donated R800,000 to help fund necessary improvements to the Red Cross Children’s Hospital,” she said. “These funds have assisted us to fund a Surgical Skills Training Facility, a General Medical Ward upgrade and a new Radiology Complex, and now they will assist with the much-needed Childsafe Centre. Thanks to donors, like Sea Harvest, funding the Hospital’s upgrades, equipment needs, research, training and capital works projects, we are able to maintain the Hospital’s reputable status as a state-of-the-art child health institution that impacts on the healthcare of children in Africa and globally,” she said.
Professor Sebastian Van As, Head of the Trauma Unit and Childsafe, said a dedicated Childsafe Centre at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital would be easily accessible to patient’s parents as well as the general public. “With improved space and infrastructure, Childsafe will offer improved education and skills training for patients’ families and the public at large. We plan to create a ‘Safety Demonstration House’ modelled on lower income households where adults can see and learn how to best assemble their homes to be as safe as possible for their children,“ he said.
“In the new centre, Childsafe will also have more capacity to provide input into child safety legislation in order to create adequate and appropriate standards regarding children’s products,” said Van As. According to Van As the organisation was instrumental in child safety legislation with regard to firearm ownership, seat belt use in vehicles and the rollout of the ‘candle in the sand’ project which demonstrates how using a common glass jar filled with sand to hold up a candle ensures safety.
Sea Harvest is honoured to be able to assist with this much-needed improvement at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital, said Ratheb. “At Sea Harvest we want to assist this world-class hospital educate our communities on creating safe environments for our children so that fewer children will have to endure the pain and suffering caused by preventable accidents.”
For more information visit www.seaharvest.co.za or www.childrenshospitaltrust.org.za.
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