Media Releases
Monday April 23, 2018
The Comrades Marathon App has been Launched!!!

Bonitas Uplifts

This year Bonitas is going the extra mile in making the 2017 Comrades Marathon ultra-special. Bonitas’ partnered with the Community Chest to make warm up tops for all Comrades Runners and draw string bags for the Bonitas Comrades seminars.

The Community Chest awarded the job to one of their beneficiaries; namely The Pietermaritzburg Mental Health Society (PMB MHS). The Mental Health Society and its workers from the Buxton Workshop happily handmade the 20,000 warm up tops and 1300 draw string bags.

Over 20 intellectually challenged adults supervised by the dedicated staff of Mental Health and facilitated by the Community Chest ensured the items were done on time and in top quality. The team at the Community Chest facilitated the entire process and is extremely grateful to Bonitas for giving the workers of Buxton Workshop at the Mental Health Society this hands-on opportunity.

This contract not only brings in an extra income stream for the Mental Health Society, but also pocket-money for the intellectually challenged workers who got the job done. Through the support of Bonitas, the funds will also help their Work Skills Programme which aims:

  • To stimulate the transformation in the workshops from grassroots, in accordance with the updated policies as determined in the document of the SA Federation for Mental Health;
  • to change people’s perceptions about persons with mental disabilities and what they are able to learn and achieve;
  • to make workshops and their staff accountable for a systematic approach to developing trainees’ abilities and independence;
  • to create a resource pool of trained persons who can be ready for employment opportunities in the open labour market.

Since the initiation of the programme, 30 people have been placed in the open labour market and some are now in permanent employment. One group goes to an outside clothing distribution centre to price tag garments, under the supervision of a workshop instructor.

The workshops also have a sport and recreation programme to allow for all round development of their abilities. The PMB & District Community Chest together the PMB Mental Health Society wishes to extend their sincere thanks and appreciation to Bonita’s and the Comrades Marathon Association for giving these special individuals an opportunity to broaden their skills.