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Corporates to raise funds for charity

THE Cresta Hospitality group is hosting a social responsibility golf tournament at Harare’s Borrowdale Brooke Golf Club today to raise money for underprivileged children.

s-serif”>The event is being jointly organised with several stakeholders in the hospitality industry.

The number of orphans in Zimbabwe is expected to hit 1,5 million by 2005 and a new corporate sector initiative has been launched to alleviate suffering among the children.

Independent non-governmental organisation statistics estimate that the number of orphans will rise from about 600 000 in 2003 to at least 1,5 million next year, largely due to the impact of the HIV/Aids scourge.

Touched by the plight of orphans and the growing number of child-headed families, hotel management group Cresta Hospitality has teamed up with other companies to raise funds for charity.

Cresta Hospitality group sales and marketing manager Norman Moyo said because of this the hotel management group would host a social responsibility golf tournament at Borrowdale Brooke today.

“Last year we launched the ‘Social responsibility golf tournament’ and the response was phenomenal from the various sectors of the corporate industry,” Moyo said. “Funds raised from this year’s event from various corporate companies who donated through registration fees and goods for auction will be used for providing orphaned children in remote areas of Zimbabwe with the chance to live life fully.”

In what is fast emerging as one of the largest private sector initiatives to alleviate poverty among vulnerable children, more than 24 teams have confirmed their participation in this year’s “Social responsibility golf tournament” and various corporates have in addition provided goods for auction.

National airline Air Zimbabwe has again kindly donated a return ticket valued at $725 000 for auction. Last year’s return ticket to Bulawayo was bought and re-donated by TA Holdings executive chairman Shingi Mutasa.

This year, TA Holdings has further pledged to donate money towards the worthy cause over and above the Cresta Hospitality room-nights donation.

The target for this year’s tournament is $25 million to be raised from registration fees and donations of room nights by Cresta.

Under the arrangement, Cresta sets aside a percentage of the money raised from charges for overnight accommodation at its hotels and donates that amount to charity.

The hotel group manages four properties in Zimbabwe, one in Ghana, eight in Botswana, and plans to open another in Malawi later this month.

Proceeds from the tournament will be channelled to child-focused charities in Lupane and Hurungwe that were identified by World Vision Zimbabwe.

World Vision Zimbabwe continues to score some successes in improving the living conditions of children and has now set its sights on meeting the challenges posed by the growing number of child-headed families.

A Christian relief and development organisation that began operating in Zimbabwe in 1973, World Vision presently supports more than 47 000 children around the country in the form of educational assistance, food aid and healthcare support.

Through its programme interventions, the organisation has provided hope for several young children through the construction of clinics and schools, the rehabilitation of boreholes and provision of furniture and textbooks for schools in many parts of the country.

World Vision International launched the HOPE initiative in 2000 as a global response to HIV/Aids.

The ‘O’ in the acronym stands for orphan care.

In July 2003, World Vision Zimbabwe launched the Orphan Care Project. The project is currently benefiting about 10 000 orphans and vulnerable children in the organisation’s area development programmes of Chipinge, Chivi, Dande, Gokwe, Hurungwe, Lupane and Mberengwa.

The HIV/Aids pandemic has increased the number of orphans and child-headed families. Statistics from the Ministry of Health, Aids and TB Unit (2004) show that 1 018 000 children have been orphaned due to the pandemic in Zimbabwe.

The initiative seeks to fulfil the organisation’s vision: “Our Vision for every child; life in all its fullness. Our prayer for every heart, the will to make it so.”

“The Orphan Care Project is a vital intervention because it takes a holistic approach to the needs of the orphans, both as individuals and within their families,” said World Vision national director Rudo Kwaramba at the launch of the project.

“It seeks to attend to a whole package of needs, be they health, education, material and other such needs. It is a more focussed approach whose mandate is solely to assist orphans and make life bearable for them.”

In the past few years, World Vision Zimbabwe has established solid ties with a several companies with whom it has supported vulnerable children.

* Article prepared by Cresta Hospitality group.

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