Bank Windhoek has called for the continued funding of cancer awareness programmes and organisation to mitigate the rising number of reported cancer diagnosis cases in Namibia.
Speaking at the handover of the Bank's annual Cancer Apple Project, Jacquiline Pack, Executive Officer for Marketing and Corporate Communication Services, said: “As the number of Namibians diagnosed with cancer increases every year, it stands to reason that funding to organisations such as the Cancer Association needs to be both continuous and consistent. Funds raised through the project last year has been allocated to the Patient Financial Assistance Programme, and paediatric cancer patient care. Continued emphasis was placed on screening women for HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer. Bank Windhoek regards the Outreach Programme a critical exercise and commends CAN for going into the most remote communities to do this vital work. This kind of relentless action is an extension of our vision at Bank Windhoek, which is to invest in communities in which we operate."
On Friday, 8 November 2019, Bank Windhoek announced that despite challenging economic conditions, its Cancer Apple Project, which has positively impacted the lives of many Namibians, has managed to raise N$2.5 million in aid of the Cancer Association of Namibia (CAN). This was revealed at the funds handover ceremony held at CAN's Chica Interim Home in Windhoek.
Themed 'More than an apple. It's a fruit of hope', for 2019, the aim of the project is to create cancer awareness and raise funds for much needed support in the community. With Bank Windhoek as the main sponsor, the project taps into the charitable nature of ordinary Namibians who are willing to buy an apple for N$5.
Pack added that the N$ 2.5 raised in support of the incredible work done by the CAN, is the result of many ordinary Namibians, each doing their little bit of good. “Compassion and caring is what makes us human. Love for our fellow human beings lies at the heart of who we really are. This donation demonstrates that ordinary Namibians have connected with each other for a common goal that resulted in N$ 2.5 million," said Pack.
In its nineteenth year, the Bank Windhoek Cancer Apple Project has grown into one of the biggest Corporate Social Responsibility undertakings in Namibia and has raised in excess of N$25.5 million since its inception. The collected funds amongst others, enables the CAN to reach out and screen Namibians from all walks of life at no cost - screening for cervical and prostate cancer throughout the 14 Regions.
In 2018, 3 778 women were screened for cervical cancer; of these 2 158 of them were tested at the National Cancer Outreach Clinics, fully subsidised by CAN with funds raised through the Cancer Apple Project. Another 1 620 women were screened through the Women's Health Clinic. Of these 3 778 screenings, 1 083 were referred for treatment for high grade pre-cancerous cervical lesions, while 31 – nearly 10 percent were referred for urgent treatment for cervical cancer.
The Entrepreneurial Challenge, introduced four years ago to increase the amount of money raised, was a success. Through this initiative, each Bank Windhoek Branch and Department receives seed capital of N$4 500 - used to make a profit. The Branch that generated the most profit in the three months allowed for this, was Walvis Bay Branch with a profit of N$95 986.22. The branch that sold the most apples, was again Swakopmund Branch who sold 60 059 apples.
2019 also saw a total of 570 schools participating in the Project. Each of the schools competed for selling the most apples in four categories, namely; Pre-Primary, Primary, and Secondary and Combined Schools. With total prize money of N$60 000, each winning school received a cash prize of N$7 000, while schools who came second and third each received N$5 000 and N$3 000 respectively.
The winners of the school competition are:
- First Prize: India's Day Care (Luderitz
- Second Prize: Kelkiewyn (Windhoek)
- Third Prize: Kindergarten West (Windhoek)
- First Prize: Deutsche Privatschule Otavi (Tsumeb branch)
- Second Prize: Deutsche Privatscule Grootfontein (Grootfontein)
- Third Prize: Privaatskool Excelsior (Keetmanshoop)
- First Prize: Redimere Academy Secondary School (Tsumeb)
- Second Prize: Berg Op Akademie (Okahandja)
- Third Prize: Tsumeb Gimnasium (Tsumeb)
- First Prize: Henties Bay Private School (Henties Bay)
- Second Prize: Edugate Academy (Otjiwarongo)
- Third Prize: Privaatskool Elnatan (Stampriet)
The partners of the 2018 Bank Windhoek Cancer Apple Project were:
- Namibia Fresh Produce,
- Fruit and Veg City,
- NamPost Couriers and FP du Toit Transport,
- Safari Hotels,
- PayToday Namibia and GiveToday,
- Solitaire Press,
- the Radio Services of the NBC,
- Maerua SuperSpar and
- Jaylo Productions.