South Africa’s Gift of the Givers turns 23

11 August 2015

Gift of the Givers, the internationally renowned aid organisation that is based in Pietermaritzburg, reached a milestone when it celebrated its 23rd anniversary on 6 August.

It has been congratulated on its achievement by a number of organisations and government departments.

“We honour our association with an organisation that has made an incalculable contribution to the upliftment of the under-privileged, not just in South Africa but around the world,” said the Department of Environmental Affairs.

The department noted the humanitarian and disaster relief work done by the NGO. “Gift of the Givers provides aid to 40 different countries around the globe. Its humanitarian services know no boundaries of race, colour, or creed.”

Thanking people for their support, whether that be through donations or contribution of skills, the NGO said: “There will be no celebration, no party, no cutting of cake but only a silent prayer of thankfulness to the Almighty, for through His permission, we have managed to serve millions of people worldwide.

“We appreciate the contribution of every single person, be it cash or kind, be it R1 or R100 000; be it in the form of prayer, words of support, well wishes, advice or promoting our activities through whatever manner.”

Gift of the Givers workers were described as South Africa’s brand ambassadors. As part of its humanitarian aid, the organisation provides highly skilled medical personnel to those most in need.

“Twenty-one years into democracy, South Africa continues to face challenges that are the legacy of centuries of discrimination and deprivation of the majority,” said the Department of Environmental Affairs. “But we have much to be proud of: we have come a long way.”

About Gift of the Givers

The organisation describes itself as the largest disaster response NGO of African origin on the African continent.

Based in the KwaZulu-Natal capital, it was established by Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, a South African, on the instruction of a spiritual teacher, Sheik Muhammed Saffer Effendi al Jerrahi, in Istanbul, Turkey on 6 August 1992.

Since then, Gift of the Givers has delivered lifesaving aid in the form of search and rescue teams, medical personnel, medical equipment, medical supplies, medicines, vaccines, anti-malarial medication, high energy and protein supplements, food and water to millions of people in 41 countries, South Africa included.

SAinfo reporter