#SAVEWATER EFFORTS TO INTENSIFY

MEDIA STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thursday 8 March 2018

#SAVEWATER EFFORTS TO INTENSIFY

#SaveWater Ambassadors have called for increased saving of water following an announcement that there is unlikely to be “Day Zero” this year.

“We don’t want Capetonians especially to now sit back and think we’re out of the woods now. We are not!

“If anything, we have to increase the saving of water and focus on bringing down usage even further,” said Chief #SaveWater Ambassador, Yusuf Abramjee.

He said “the drought is serious and the fact that the taps may not be closed does not mean we can get back to our old habits of wasting water.”

Abramjee said educational campaigns and activations will continue and will also be extended to other parts of the country.

Ahead of World Water Day on Thursday, 22 March, a number of events are being planned by the Department of Water and Sanitation, Operation SA, Miss Earth SA and partners.

“We will also focus on other provinces including Limpopo. We want every South African to embrace saving water because #EveryDropCounts,” he added.

Department of Water and Sanitation spokesperson, Sputnik Ratau, said: “We salute everyone who is saving water. Thank you for making a difference. We need to all continue to increase our savings.

“We have a lot of work that still lies ahead. We call on civil society, business, the agricultural sector, NGO’s and the media to all work together,” said Ratau.

International Climate Activist and Co-Chief #SaveWater Ambassador, Catherine Constantindes, said: “We all have a responsibility to ensure that we play our part and save water.

“It’s the basic principles of sustainability that need to be a fundamental foundation of how we operate; this must be the new business as usual. We continue to advocate to #SaveWater and remember that we are a water stressed country and #EveryDropCounts.

“Through the Miss Earth South Africa programme, we hope to continue #InspiringWaterHeroes across our nation as we remember that water is life,” Constantinides added.

Teams recently visited 100 schools in and around Cape Town and engaged tens of thousands of learners.

Linda Magapatona-Sangaret
Chief Marketing Officer, Brand South Africa said: “The water scarcity should be the business of all citizens and not just Capetonians.

“If we all make efforts in reducing water usage and wastage, the challenge can be managed along with innovation. South Africans must learn to save this vital resource to ensure that other parts of the country don’t have to deal with a ‘Day Zero’ situation in future.

“We must take lessons from what has happened. We salute the efforts of the #SaveWater campaign and all other initiatives to get citizens to understand, act and prevent a catastrophic situation,” said Magapatona-Sangaret.

Lerato Dumisa, Sunlight 2in1 Assistant Brand Manager said “finding a way to use a limited resource when you are accustomed to using a lot of water in your home is not easy for anyone. Yes, saving water is now a reality that we and our children have to work towards as we work together to create a #WaterSmartNation. Let us continue to do our part and be responsible citizens, ensuring we have access to water tomorrow.”

Aden Thomas, Breakfast Show Host at Heart FM said “we must change our relationship with water and continue to treat it as the scarce resource that it is.”

Operation SA activist and #SaveWater Ambassador, Yaseen Theba, said: “Its not enough to just defeat ‘DayZero’. Every South African has to change their mindset now so that over time, apart from just saving water, we can build up sustainable alternatives to deal with global water challenges.”

#SaveWater Ambassador, Lance Witten, live editor, Cape Argus said: “Even though Cape Town’s residents have done exceptionally well to avert a real humanitarian crisis by saving water and drastically reducing their water consumption, the fact that we may have staved off a ‘Day Zero’ scenario cannot lull us into a false sense of security.

“The reality is that we all have to come to terms that we live in a water-scarce environment, despite being surrounded by the sea. We can no longer rely on our wet winters to save us. For too long, we have been wasteful in our behaviour, therefore, while we celebrate the shift in mindset that led to ‘Day Zero’ possibly being averted in 2018, we need to remain mindful that continued water savings are needed.

“We need to inculcate #SaveWater in every resident, so that we change our entire water culture from one of gratuitous water usage and wastage, to a mindset of conservation and frugality. #EveryDropCounts – this is a message we must never forget,” Witten added.

Bridgetti Lim Banda, social entrepreneur and founder of the Facebook Page Cape Town Water Crisis said: “Our dams are not less empty and whilst acknowledging the phenomenal hard work and savings of most Capetonians we need to continue encouraging each other to save water in view of the uncertainty of the amount of rain we may get this winter.”

Deputy President of the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC), Moulana Abdul Khalik Ebrahim Alli, said “we salute all the activists and the ambassadors and our local civic organizations for their sterling work in highlighting the great blessing and the valuable resource that water is to our community.

“It is this collective effort that’s brought about greater awareness to the community, to the students at schools and to all politicians and everyone in the Western Cape that brought about the shift of wasting water to preserving water,” Moulana Alli added.

He said the call to #SaveWater will continue.

Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris said: “Residents, businesses, visitors and farmers are helping to build a destination that is a world-leader in climate change resilience. According to our research, Cape Town has reduced its water consumption by nearly 57%. It took Melbourne, in comparison, 12 years to achieve the same percentage reduction. We cannot let our foot off the pedal now. We must work as hard as possible to continue this water saving effort, so that we set a new global standard that the rest of the world will look to follow. If we continue on this successful path, we will build a truly resilient city that will be even more attractive to live, play, work, visit and invest in.”

Michelle Bagley from the Amy Foundation also appealed to South Africans to continue water saving efforts. She said the “various partnerships and collaborations showed what can be achieved when we work together.”

Abramjee called on municipalities across the country to introduce #SaveWater campaigns.

“The City of Johannesburg is one of the few that has started awareness drives. We appeal to others to do the same with urgency and mobilize,” he added.

End

Enquiries:

*Yusuf Abramjee cell 082 4414 203

*Catherine Constantindes cell ‭083 747 7677

MILLIONS OF RANDS DONATED TO #SAveSyria by #OperationSA

MEDIA STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WEDNESDAY 28 DECEMBER 2016

MILLIONS OF RANDS DONATED TO #SAveSyria by #OperationSA

JOHANNESBURG- Almost R10-million was presented to seven charities today by #OperationSA for the #SAveSyria humanitarian efforts.

The money was raised following an urgent call for donations over the past ten days. R14 110 668.00
was pledged as at 8am today.

Speaking at a cheque handing over ceremony in Houghton Johannesburg today,
#OperationSA’s Yusuf Abramjee said “the response from South Africans has been over-whelming. People have opened their hearts and have dug deep into their pockets over the past few days. This is Ubuntu in action yet again.”

Abramjee told the seven charities that the money had to be used for humanitarian aid only. “We don’t want one rand to go towards salaries, travel, commission, etc.

“There is a desperate need for food, medicines, clothing, blankets, shelter, etc. We want to also ensure that the aid reaches the people of Syria without delay,” Abramjee said.

Six charities received R1-million each. They are the Jamiatul Ulama SA, Africa Muslims Agency, Jamiatul Ulama KZN, Darul lslam Relief Fund/Muslim Judicial Council (SA), Islamic Relief SA and the Al Quds Foundation.

The Al-Imdaad Foundation was presented with a cheque of R3,655 000. The Polokwane Muslim Trust Welfare Fund donated R2,3m. Two other donors also requested their funds for the Foundation.

A total of R9 655 000 was paid to the charities. The balance will be hand over in January once all the money pledged is in.

Representatives from the organizations thanked #OperationSA for mobilizing at very short notice and for raising the millions of rands.
They said #OperationSA united NGO’s.

Abramjee said the “recall rate has been excellent. Over 70% of the money pledged and was paid into the special account within a week.”

He said “doing good should become a way of life. We at #OperationSA are looking at ways of assisting people in need in South Africa next year also on a massive scale.”

Yaseen Theba from #OperationSA said everyone from NGO’s to Womens’ Groups, companies, individuals and school children have donated.

“We have seen South Africans from across the spectrum donating. This money is going to go a very long way to assist the people of Syria,” added Theba.

He said the multi-channel media broadcast last Tuesday evening raised just over R10m. “Some R4m was pledged via SMS’s, Whats App and on-line.”

Former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has also thrown her weight behind #OperationSA.

She said “the biggest mistake we can make is doing nothing” and has placed her full support. She was also announced as a patron of #OperationSA.

Scores of young children, some donating their spending money, also called-in to the pledge lines last week. A Pretoria family, who did or want to be named, even cancelled their planned holiday to donate to #SAveSyria.

Al-Imdaad’s Projects Coordinator Qari Ziyaad Patel said: “Our teams on the ground are ready to facilitate the relief efforts on behalf of #OperationSA and with the experience and transparency we have it will indeed be and eye opener for the group.

“The situation and difficulties faced by the Syrian people is without doubt the worst humanitarian crisis of our time and together this initiative from #OperationSA will make a huge difference.”

A container filled with essential items such as food and clothing left Johannesburg today.

The Al-Quds Foundation said a second container was being prepared for January.

Speaking at the “Container Sealing Ceremony” in Ennerdale, Abramjee thanked the many donors. “You are going to help thousands of people. We salute you for caring.”

#OperationSA is continuing to take pledges. SMS or WhatsApp 072 3 99 99 99 or on-line www.operationsa.org

ENQUIRIES:

Yusuf Abramjee
Cell 082 4414 203
Twitter: @abramjee

Yaseen Theba
Cell 064 4 000 000
Twitter: @yaseentheba

#OperationSA’s telethon to save Syria a success

Johannesburg – South Africans showed their spirit of Ubuntu again on Tuesday night when the #OperationSA organisation hosted a live telethon in Joburg, in an effort to raise money for humanitarian relief in war-torn Syria.

#OperationSA was formed by social activists Yusuf Abramjee and Yaseen Theba, among others, in reaction to the plight of Syrians experiencing hardships as war rages between President Bashar al-Assad’s forces and rebels seeking to overthrow the Assad regime.

During the live broadcast of the telethon, both Abramjee and Theba stressed that they could not sit back and do nothing while their fellow humans in Syria suffered because of a senseless war.

“We know what is happening [in Syria] – men, women and children are being slaughtered. How can we as South Africans sit back and watch the blood continuing to flow? It’s heartbreaking,” Abramjee said.

He contended that the rest of the world has largely sat back and done nothing to assist Syrians, saying South African should draw on their spirit of Ubuntu.

“We, in South Africa, in the true spirit of Ubuntu, have decided to unite under the banner of #OperationSA and to really make a difference. There’s an urgent need for food, medicine, blankets, mattresses and shelters,” Abramjee added.

The first caller on the telethon was a young girl from Pretoria, Amina, who pledged R5 000 to the relief efforts, saying she also wanted to play her part.

Abramjee emphasised that every cent which is collected will go towards Syrians in need, and their organisation will make sure that the intended beneficiaries receive the funds.

“The chief executive of ITV, the channel which hosted the telethon, and myself will be travelling to Syria over the next two weeks to ensure that every cent that you are donating tonight is well spent,” he asserted.

After roughly one hour and 15 minutes after the telethon began, Theba announced that they had managed to raise over R1.2 million from pledges throughout South Africa and outside of South Africa.

Beneficiaries of this initiative include the Al Imdaad Foundation, Islamic Relief SA, Africa Muslims Agency, Jamiatul Ulama SA and Jamiatul Ulama KZN. There are also a number of smaller organisations which will benefit from this initiative.

People can continue to make pledges on http://www.operationsa.org/. 

khaya.koko@inl.co.za

The Star

South Africans raise R10m to #SAveSyria

banking-detailsJohannesburg – South Africans have raised more than R10 million in humanitarian aid to help desperate refugees in Syria, particularly in the beleaguered city of Aleppo.

A pledge-line by the five-day old NGO #OperationSA raised R10 028 953 within five hours for the #SAveSyria campaign.

The #SAveSyria campaign was launched at the weekend following calls to assist victims in Aleppo and other parts of war-torn Syria.

The pledge line on ITV channel (DSTV 347) and several radio stations saw almost 800 callers pledging.

The biggest single pledge was R2m from the Polokwane Muslim Trust Welfare Fund.

Scores of young children, some donating their spending money, also called in.

The money is to be distributed to seven local charities who are doing humanitarian work in Syria. They are the Al-Imdaad Foundation, Africa Muslims Agency, Jamiatul-Ulama SA, Jamiatul-Ulama KZN, Al-Quds Foundation, Muslim Judicial Council and Islamic Relief SA.

Social activists Yusuf Abramjee, Yaseen Theba and Catherine Constantinides are among those behind #OperationSA.

“South Africans and foreigners opened their hearts. The donations will go a long way to ease the pain and suffering of Syrians,” said Yusuf Abramjee from #OperationSA

“We witnessed Ubuntu in action yet again. The response from the public has been amazing and we will ensure that every rand raised is used for humanitarian relief such as food, blankets, medicines and shelter,” added Abramjee.

Yaseen Theba from #OperationSA said the pledge line was a “major success”.

“The phones did not stop ringing. The shocking images from Syria also prompted many callers to donate. The over R10m raised in such a short period of time shows we are a caring nation,” said Theba who directed the Call Centre Operations.

The public can continue donating on the website www.operationsa.org and donations can also be made via Whats App and SMS: 072 3 99 99 99.

Catherine Constantinides said: “Thank you, thank you, thank you. South Africans never stop to amaze. They dig deep into their pockets and they always make a difference. We have hearts of gold. I am proud of my colleagues at #OperationSA, the many volunteers and sponsors. Well done also to the media for supporting the cause.”

Abramjee said a delegation was planning to visit Syria soon “to look at conditions and the relief work underway.” The Al-Imdaad Foundation is co-ordinating the visit.

#OperationSA will continue to work locally and internationally by engaging with partners, donors and communities “to develop projects that bring relief, hope and dignity to some of the most vulnerable people.”

Source

Over R10-million pledged for #SAveSyria by #OperationSA

MEDIA STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wednesday 21 December 2016

Over R10-million pledged for #SAveSyria by #OperationSA

banking-detailsA pledge line by the five-day old NGO #OperationSA to assist with humanitarian efforts in Syria raised R 10 028 953.00 within five hours.

The #SAveSyria campaign was launched at the weekend following calls to assist victims in Aleppo and other parts of war-torn Syria.

Social activists Yusuf Abramjee, Yaseen Theba and Catherine Constantinides are among those behind #OperationSA.

The pledge line on ITV channel (DSTV 347) and several radio stations saw almost 800 callers pledging.

The biggest single pledge was R2m from the Polokwane Muslim Trust Welfare Fund.

Scores of young children, some donating their spending money, also called-in.

The money is to be distributed to seven local charities who are doing humanitarian work in Syria. They are the Al-Imdaad Foundation, Africa Muslims Agency, Jamiatul-Ulama SA, Jamiatul-Ulama KZN, Al-Quds Foundation, Muslim Judicial Council and Islamic Relief SA.

“South Africans and foreigners opened their hearts. The donations will go a long way to ease the pain and suffering of Syrians,” said Yusuf Abramjee from #OperationSA

“We witnessed Ubuntu in action yet again. The response from the public has been amazing and we will ensure that every rand raised is used for humanitarian relief such as food, blankets, medicines and shelter,” added Abramjee.

Yaseen Theba from #OperationSA said the pledge line was a “major success.”

“The phones did not stop ringing. The shocking images from Syria also prompted many callers to donate. The over R10m raised in such a short period of time shows we are a caring nation,” said Theba who directed the Call Centre Operations.

On-line pledges are still coming in and the public can continue donating on the website www.operationsa.org

Donations can also be made via Whats App and SMS: 072 3 99 99 99.

Catherine Constantinides said: “Thank you, thank you, thank you. South Africans never stop to amaze. They dig deep into their pockets and they always make a difference. We have hearts of gold. I am proud of my colleagues at #OperationSA, the many volunteers and sponsors. Well done also to the media for supporting the cause.”

Abramjee said a delegation was planning to visit Syria soon “to look at conditions and the relief work underway.” The Al-Imdaad Foundation is co-ordinating the visit.

#OperationSA will continue to work locally and internationally by engaging with partners, donors and communities “to develop projects that bring relief, hope and dignity to some of the most vulnerable people.”
#SAveSyria banking details.

AL IMDAAD FOUNDATION
FNB
BR CODE 220325*
ACC No.62102373206
Ref: AIF20819
Aleppo-Zakaat/Lillah/Sadaqah etc.
*Must mention Zakaat, Lillah etc.
Send Proof to info@operationsa.org

ALL DONATIONS MUST INCLUDE THE ABOVE REF NUMBER.
Twitter: @OperationSA1
FB: www.facebook.com/operationsa

Instagram operationsa1

Website: www.operationsa.org

END

Enquiries:
Yusuf Abramjee
Cell 082 4414 203

Yaseen Theba
Cell 064 4 000 000

South Africans unite to urgently assist #Aleppo #Syria

MEDIA STATEMENT

SUNDAY 18 December 2016

#OperationSA

South Africans unite to urgently assist #Aleppo #Syria

A group of South Africans have formed #OperationSA and its first task is to urgently raise money for humanitarian efforts in Syria.

Among those behind the initiative, amongst others, are social activists’ Yusuf Abramjee, Yaseen Theba and Catherine Constantinides.

Abramjee said “an urgent decision was taken at the weekend to make Aleppo and other parts of Syria the first project. We cannot sit back and see the suffering continue. Innocent men, women and children are being slaughtered and thousands are crying for help.

“Many local and foreign charities are assisting but we all need to DO much more. There is an urgent need for food, medical supplies, blankets, mattresses and shelter.

“We decided to co-ordinate the collection drive and #OperationSA will distribute the funds to credible charities who are working on the ground as a matter of urgency,” Abramjee said.

ITV on DSTV channel 347 will host a pledge line/telethon on Tuesday evening from 7.30pm to 11.30pm.

Several radio stations and media organizations will take the broadcast live: they include Souk Islam Channel (You Tube), Radio Al Ansaar, Radio Islam, Channel Islam InternationalVoice of the Cape, Sirius FM and Deen TV.

“We are delighted so many NGO’s and media organizations have joined hands. We stand united for a common purpose – to help those in need.”

#OperationSA is supported by various organizations throughout the country including Islamic Relief SA, The Al Imdaad Foundation, Jamiatul Ulama SA, Jamiatul Ulama KZN, Awqaf SA, Crescent Lifestyle, Africa Muslims Agency, Al Quds Foundation, Caring Women’s Forum and The Two Lights Foundation.

Several other humanitarians and NGO’s are also on the working committee including community leader Andy Mashaile, Al Firnaz Patel from Crescent Lifestyle, Zaheera Bham Ismail from the Caring Womens Forum (CWF), attorney Yousha Tayob, banker Amman Muhammed and Raeesa Rhemtula.

Deputy CEO of Awqaf SA Mikaeel Collier from Cape Town, businessman Ridwaan Kalla and attorney Raeesa Rhemtula from Polokwane are also on the Working Committee.

“We are hoping to raise a few million rand,” #OperationSA added.

Beneficiaries will include, amongst others, the Al Imdaad Foundation, Islamic Relief SA, Africa Muslims Agency, Jamiatul Ulama SA and Jamiatul Ulama KZN. A number of smaller charities are also on the list.

#OperationSA is a non-profit organization whose sole mission is to reduce human suffering.

“We respond to natural disasters, humanitarian emergencies and poverty locally and abroad. We are non-sectarian and non-political.

“Ubuntu – This African proverb reveals a world view that we owe our selfhood to others, that we are first and foremost social beings, that, if you will, no person is an island, or as the African would have it, ‘One finger cannot pick up a grain.’

“Ubuntu is, at the same time, a deeply personal philosophy that calls on us to mirror our humanity for each other.

“We encourage willing participation, warmth, openness, and personal dignity by partnering with communities, governments and corporate organizations. These relationships let us harness complementary expertise and networks to ensure that each community gets the best response available.

“People are powerful when they are heard,” said #OperationSA

“By engaging with partners, donors and communities, #OperationSA fosters skills such as transparency, accountability and open public debate — the cornerstones of effective civil society. And a strong civil society supports good governance, the critical force behind long-term development and stability.

“We believe that dynamic partnerships are critical to solving challenges. Our partners – from corporations to foundations to entrepreneurs – are committed to developing and supporting socially responsible initiatives that build stronger communities in the developing world, while enhancing business and development goals.

“Together, #OperationSA and our partners can help build a world of opportunities.”

Abramjee and Theba were involved in #OperationHydrate earlier this year which saw millions of liters of water distributed to communities in need.

Theba said: “With the support across the board, we are going to make our mark again and assist those in need. Let’s all work together and assist when and where we can.

“Going forward, we also going to launch a programme to help individuals and charities in need across SA,” he added.

On-line pledges are already being taken for the Syrian relief. Almost R250 000 was pledged within 24 hours.

Pledges for #SAVeSyria can be made on-line:

www.operationsa.org

Banking

AL IMDAAD FOUNDATION

FNB

BR CODE 220325*

ACC No.62102373206

Ref: AIF20819

Aleppo-Zakaat/Lillah/Sadaqah etc.

*Must mention Zakaat, Lillah etc.

Send Proof to info@operationsa.org

ALL DONATIONS MUST INCLUDE THE ABOVE REF NUMBER.

Twitter: @OperationSA1

FB: www.facebook.com/operationsa

Instagram operationsa1

Website: www.operationsa.org

Enquiries:

Yusuf Abramjee cell 082 4414 203

Yaseen Theba cell 064 4 000 000

Proteas and fans donate water

Operation Hydrate ran an initiative where Proteas and their fans donated water.

Eliot Mahlase

Members of the South African cricket team and their fans donated thousands of litres of water at the SuperSport Park in Centurion on Tuesday.

The initiative was sponsored by Operation Hydrate and Momentum ahead of the third One Day International between England and South Africa.

The Proteas and their fans donated over 5 500 litres of water. Brooklyn police station commander Brigadier Kushie Nair was also there to help donate water.

The initiative comes after severe drought has hit South Africa in the past few months.

Operation Hydrate co-founder and spokesperson Yusuf Abramjee thanked the Proteas and fans for coming in their numbers to donate bottles of water.

“Every Protea player came to donate 10 to 20 litres of water today and it again showed Ubuntu in action. We also had the local police who came with a bakkie full of water,” he said.

“We distributed about 6.2 million litres of water to drought-stricken areas of South Africa. We expected more sealed fresh water and this water will be distributed to areas in the Free State, parts of Limpopo, Mpumalanga and other affected provinces. We know the drought is still very severe and people are in need.”

Abramjee urged South Africans to continue with their spirit of Ubuntu.

“South Africans open their hearts whenever we call on them to donate. It was really heartening to see the Proteas taking the extraordinary steps to make a difference.”

The initiative would continue throughout the year. In the next few days, it would move to the Wanderers and Newlands stadiums before cricket matches.

More than 1 500 volunteers throughout the country were also doing their part, said Abramjee.

To become involved with Operation Hydrate visit www.operationhydrate.com or SMS by sending the word WATER to 42530 at a cost of R30.