Casual Day’s ambassadors Kashveera Chanderjith and Nicole Laxton celebrated the beginning of Women’s Month by visiting the Sunshine Association Early Learning Centre for children with disabilities in Elsburg, Germiston. Amongst other activities, they handed out toys to promote find motor co-ordination.
This was their way of paying homage to the women of our nation. Says Casual Day project leader Celeste Vinassa, “Whatever issues affect women in general, women with disabilities are also affected, be it violence, lack of employment, discrimination, lack of access to education, housing and opportunities – often affected far more profoundly. It is therefore important for us at Casual Day to raise awareness of the triumphs and stories of survival of women with disabilities. Casual Day is a huge community of people united to create a barrier-free society where all women are afforded respect and dignity.”
Casual Day is South Africa’s most successful fundraising project for persons with disabilities – and the amount raised for last year is R24.8 million. Sponsored by The Edcon Group, Casual Day is the flagship project of the National Council for Persons with Physical Disabilities in South Africa (NCPPDSA), which this year celebrates 75 years of service to the community of persons with disabilities.
Casual Day is on Friday 5 September. The theme is Bring out the Bling.
Casual Day ambassador Nicole Laxton, who has Absence Epilepsy, says “Celebrating Women's Month for me is an endorsement of the incredible potential that women have to make a difference in South Africa. As a Casual Day ambassador and young woman, I have chosen to create awareness for children living with disabilities. I believe it's important for me to make a contribution to society and to reach out to people in my community to try to make a positive difference wherever I can. Women in South Africa have incredible talent and if collectively pooled we can accomplish great success not only in our professional lives but on a personal level as well.”
Casual Day ambassador Kashveera Chanderjith is the first profoundly deaf chartered accountant in South Africa. She is audit manager at Anglo American and is one of Accountancy SA’s 15 women representing transformation. She is a winner of a 2013 Siyabakhumbula Tributes Award for Business Excellence 2013 (Government & Civilian Award).
According to Kashveera “Woman’s day in South Africa unites the nation in striving for the upliftment and eradication of social barriers and to acknowledge and appreciate the role of woman in our everyday society. A woman is an embodiment of selflessness, fortitude and of incredible courage who has as her ethos great love to share with humanity at large.
“As a woman with a disability who aspires for greatness, the ability to allow innovation to transform and build inclusiveness in our modern day society is possible because of the multifaceted approach a woman has to all circumstances and the positivity she will continue to radiate. She is bold, she is bright, she is awesome and she transforms. This is the essence of being a woman.
Concludes Vinassa, “Our ambassadors are women who have succeeded despite their disabilities and are now helping others. They speak from experience and knowledge about disability. It’s called ‘self-advocacy’.”
The beneficiaries of Casual Day are:
National Council for Persons with Physical Disabilities in SA
South African National Council for the Blind
South African Federation for Mental Health
Deaf Federation of South Africa
Autism South Africa
Down Syndrome South Africa
National Association for Persons with Cerebral Palsy
South African National Deaf Association
National Institute for the Deaf
Alzheimer’s South Africa
South African Disability Alliance
QuadPara Association of South Africa.
Stickers are available from:
Edgars, Jet, JetMart, Boardmans, CNA, Red Square and Legit;
Game and DionWired stores;
Shoprite and Checkers stores; and
Casual Day national office on 011 609 7006.