Pretoria, South Africa – 24 May 2023: Cell C and Reach For A Dream Foundation today unveiled a new Dream Room at the Steve Biko Paediatric Cardiology and Pulmonology Clinic, designed to transform the treatment experience of seriously ill children in Pretoria.
Equipped with a range of books, games, toys, and electronic devices, including a new state-of-the-art Virtual Reality station, the Dream Room will provide a much-needed respite from the sterile and impersonal surroundings of a hospital ward.
With its whimsical decor and soothing ambiance, the Dream Room has been designed as a safe space for children to immerse themselves in imagination and play, which is integral to their physical, emotional, and mental well-being. A resident Psychology graduate will also run a variety of fun and educational activities, ensuring that their developmental milestones are met.
Natalie Lazaris, Head of Business at The Reach for a Dream Foundation, says: "We know that hospital visits can be stressful and overwhelming for children and families, especially when they are facing serious health challenges. This Dream Room has been carefully designed to be a haven of healing where children who are fighting cardiac and pulmonary illnesses can escape the pain and isolation of their treatments, and just be kids again. We hope it will have a positive impact on their overall well-being and recovery."
Reach For A Dream was established in 1988 with the core mission of giving hope to children fighting life-threatening illnesses through the fulfilment of their dreams.
"When we fulfil dreams, we aim to take children out of the hospital into a new environment with their families. But for those who rely heavily on constant treatment and observation, it’s impossible to step out of the hospital, which is why the Dream Room concept is so important," Lazaris says.
The Dream Room was made possible through a generous donation from Cell C, which contributed funds to help design, construct, and equip the space with the latest sensory technology.
“We are thrilled to have partnered with The Reach For A Dream Foundation to do what we can to spread some happiness with the refurbishment of the Steve Biko Paediatric Cardiology and Pulmonology Clinic. Seeing the smiles of the children and staff make the work of Cell C Kindness truly worthwhile,” says Lethiwe Hlatshwayo, Executive Head: Corporate Affairs and Communications at Cell C.
To date, The Foundation has successfully opened 36 Dream Rooms in various hospitals across the country, with plans to build an additional 10 rooms by 2024.
About Reach For A Dream
Reach For A Dream has been one of the country’s most recognisable and credible charities for the last 35 years. Off the back of being awarded the CSI Legacy award for Best NGO in South Africa for 2022, the Foundation has grown from strength to strength by encouraging children to use the power of their dreams to fight life-threatening illnesses and make these dreams come true. Please visit www.reachforadream.org.za for more information.
To donate to the Foundation, please visit: https://reachforadream.org.za/donate/
To refer a child, please visit: https://reachforadream.org.za/refer-a-child/
About Cell C
Cell C is a 22-year-old proudly South African customer-first mobile network operator recognised as one of the country’s 30 most valuable brands, offering a wide range of voice and data products and services, whilst evolving to a techco that provides digital services, beyond data and airtime, to more than 20 million customers.
Through its many CSI initiatives, including the Cell C Kindness programme, the telco is dedicated to funding numerous worthy causes annually that contribute towards creating a cohesive society that supports the most vulnerable members of our society.
Reach For A Dream: Birgit Deibele: Birgit@reachforadream.org.za
Cell C: Maxine Singaram: Msingaram@cellc.co.za
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LinkedIn: Reach For A Dream Foundation
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Visit our website www.worldofcellc.co.za/home-page for more information on Cell C Corporate Social Initiatives.
From left: Prof J Joshi (Paediatric Cardiologist, Steve Biko Academic Hospital), Ms. L Hlatshwayo (Executive Head: Corporate Affairs and Communications, Cell C), Prof BJ Mitchell (Head of Paediatric Cardiology Unit, Steve Biko Academic Hospital), Dr K Rangaka (Steve Biko Academic Hospital), Dr J Thomas (Steve Biko Academic Hospital), Prof I Smuts (Head of Paediatrics, Steve Biko Academic Hospital), Prof P Soma-Pillay (Chairperson of the School of Medicine, University of Pretoria), and Mr J Moela (Government Relations, Cell C)
From left: Mrs. J Sotirianakos (CEO, Reach For A Dream), Ms. N Nkomo-Ralehoko (MEC, Gauteng Health), Ms. N Lazaris (Head of Business, Reach For A Dream)