Companies Combat Covid-19

Article by Lindiwe Karosa

The fight against Covid-19 has blurred the lines between the various sectors in our economy. Politicians from all parties have formed a united front to lead South Africans in this battle against the pandemic, but interestingly, the private sector has also stepped up and pledged to assist in curbing the spread.

One would have thought that the economic implications of the nationwide lockdown would make it difficult for corporations to offer resources but this is not the case. Take a look at what some of the big companies are doing.

Old Mutual

Old Mutual will provide R4 billion in life cover to 430 000 frontline workers. The purpose of the cover is to provide relief to healthcare workers’ families in the event that the worker dies during this period.

The cover includes a sum of R10 000, has no excisions and will cover any cause of death.

Health workers will not be subjected to a monthly premium, however they must meet the qualifying criteria and be registered with the Healthcare Professionals Council of SA (HPCSA) as well as all registered practitioners of the SA Nursing Council (SANC).

Betway

In its spirit of Ubuntu, Betway has pledged a sum of R2 million to charities that have direct impacts on communities.

The purpose of this donation is to support national food relief efforts and the delivery of vital supplies that these charities might require to continue serving their communities whilst dealing with the impact of the virus.

Property Industry Group

Retail property landlords have formed an alliance known as the Property Industry Group. They’ve announced a relief package for retail tenants in condition that the tenants do not retrench any employees during the relief period.

The purpose of this package is to firstly alleviate the pressures associated with the economic impacts of Covid-19 on SMMEs, and then extending this package to large businesses that will also need support.

The group will offer rental discounts of between 15% and 100%, as well as interest-free rental deferrals for April and May.

Jaguar Land Rover SA and the Minnie Dlamini Foundation

This collaboration is intended to help feed vulnerable orphans and elderly people who may not have access to regular meals during the nationwide lockdown.

The initiative known as #FeedingSATogether will provide the South African Red Cross Society with Land Rovers to enable them to distribute food parcels and educate different communities on the pandemic.

Deliveries have already been made to Khayelitsha, Soweto, Daveyton, Germiston, Brakpan & Benoni.

Dell Technologies

This Tech giant is offering SA’s Dell Financial Services customers a relief package that will enable customers to apply for financing arrangements, and delay payments for 6 months depending on the outcome of credit approval.

This relief is intended to support local companies and the economy.

Ubuntu Beds

Kim Whitaker started this initiative to gather hospitality business owners to offer free accommodation to healthcare workers.

Frontline workers travel distances between hospitals and their homes, risking the spread of Covid-19 if they were to be infected on the job. The purpose of these beds would then be to offer these workers beds that are closer to hospitals, to prevent any avoidable spread especially to family members.

Hospitality businesses can sign up stating the number of beds they can offer, and healthcare workers can also sign up stating their regions. These lists will be consolidated so that the workers can be placed.

Apply here: https://www.ubuntubeds.org

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