Four Cape Town charities received a significant financial boost when direct sales company Pres Les decided to celebrate their success of 40 years in business by giving back to the community with donations totalling R1 million.

The beneficiaries of R250,000 each are the Red Cross Children’s Trust, Nazareth House, Girls and Boys Town and New Somerset Hospital. "We wanted to donate to established organisations that serve the needs of the local community, with an emphasis on children and therefore chose the Red Cross Children’s Trust, Nazareth House and Girls & Boys Town. Somerset Hospital was chosen because they support the medical needs of our staff both in Cape Town and Atlantis, where our factory is based," said Les Ruhrmund, CEO of Pres Les.

During the month of June and early July Pres Les staff members visited each of these four charities to share their birthday spirit by treating staff, patients and residents to birthday snacks and adding colour to their day with bright balloons and party decorations.

Girls and Boys Town

, Youth Development Centre in Macassar, was the first to receive the donation.

"The generous gift from Pres Les will be used towards a vital renovation at the ‘Learner Support Centre’ and is received with appreciation by all at Girls and Boys Town and the families we work with in the community," said Regional Fundraising Manager Patricia Roberts, "Without our friends we would not be able to continue our work with children in need of care. The improvement in the lives of the children who will benefit from this cannot easily be measured or expressed."

Nazareth House

in Vredehoek, Cape Town. Rosie Whittaker, general manager of Nazareth House said: "These much needed funds will be used to help cover the day to day expenses of caring for children who are suffering very severe disabilities and require specialised nursing care."

Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital Trust

will use the funds towards upgrading the B2 Medical Ward of the Children’s Hospital in Rondebosch. Construction is scheduled to start in July and be completed by December.

"The support we have enjoyed from Pres Les has been invaluable over the years. Their ongoing support enables us to continue with our work of maintaining the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital as a centre of excellence," said Jeneé Stamer, Fundraising Relationship Manager of the Children's Hospital Trust, which fundraises for the Hospital and Paediatric Healthcare in the Western Cape.

New Somerset Hospital

, a government funded regional facility, located adjacent to the Cape Town Stadium and the V & A Waterfront. The hospital has 334 beds and provides general specialist services to a catchment area of about 500,000 people.

The funds donated by Pres Les have been earmarked to support a project to procure equipment for the expansion of the hospital’s paediatric surgery service, a service which is of critical importance to children between the ages of two and twelve years.

Over the past four decades of its existence, Pres Les has made significant donations to many other charities, based on their belief that companies have a responsibility to contribute to the care for and development of vulnerable people in their local communities. "We believe that it is a blessing for us that in our success we are able to make a difference in the lives of many who have so little. It would be wonderful to think that we could inspire others to do the same," Rührmund said.

SA - the Good News