GEORGE NEWS – On 18 October tree trunks in more than 40 towns throughout South Africa will be covered in pink fabric to create awareness for cancer and to raise funds for people affected by the illness.
The project, Pink Trees for Pauline, was launched by Carol Ann van Jaarsveld in the Karoo town of Graaff-Reinet last year. Carol Ann lost both her mother and grandmother to cancer. Both were named Pauline.
This was the first project of its kind and raised tremendous attention in the media and the community. Thousands of meters of pink fabric were sold, the tree trunks were covered and the message, combat cancer and treasure life, was celebrated. At the same time R210 000 was raised for cancer. Up to R10 000 was paid for one meter of pink fabric. The funds raised were used for organisations that provide services to people affected by cancer in Graaff-Reinet and surrounding areas.
October is traditionally Breast Cancer Awareness month, but Pink Trees for Pauline is highlighting all types of cancer. This year this initiative is expanded nationally and towns are challenged to participate. More than 40 towns in the country have already accepted the challenge. City Parks in Johannesburg gave permission that includes all the suburbs. There are 350 000 trees. Businesses are invited to join in and order the fabric from Pink Trees.
The enthusiasm has spread over the borders of South Africa and four towns in Namibia as well as a town in Canada and Ireland are already participating.
What makes the project unique is that it is a funfilled and accessible way in which everyone can participate to make a difference. A longlasting impression is created and at the same time funds are raised for a worthy cause.
The plan of action is to sell thousands of meters of pink fabric, that will be provided, at a minimum price of R20 per meter in which the trees will be wrapped. The funds raised in a town will be used within that area for addressing needs like wheelchairs, wigs and prosthesis, transport of cancer patients, home nursing, feeding schemes and accommodation during treatment.
Adri van Niewenhuizen, a breast cancer survivor from George, acts as managing director for the project. Founder Carol Ann van Jaarsveld, and Dr Pam Kerr, an educational psychologist, are co-directors. “We intend to unite communities in a fundraising project – a first of its kind nationally and internationally.”
This is a non-profit organisation and towns and businesses are challenged to participate in this pro-active initiative to reach out to those affected by the illness.
For more information contact Adri van Niewenhuizen.