Casual Day ambassadors Top - Bongi Mdluli, Patrick Mashegwana, Taryn Zoe Gurr, Simba Gozo. Bottom - Khumo Moyane, Jonathan Groenewald and Nonhlanhla 'Adoword' Ntuli

Casual Day supports employment for persons with disabilities

The National Council for Persons with Physical Disabilities in South Africa (NCPPDSA) is the founder of one of South Africa’s favourite fundraising campaigns, Casual Day. The campaign is focused on raising awareness and supporting persons with disabilities. The NCPPDSA has recently awarded the contract to manufacture Casual Day merchandise to the Association for Persons with Physical Disabilities in Nelson Mandela Bay (APD NMB), who are also the founder of the Ability brand in South Africa.

“As one of the leading NGOs in the disability sector focused on advocacy and other supporting roles, we are often made aware of the inequalities of society and the many challenges faced by persons with disabilities in their daily lives. One of them being the challenge of unemployment faced by persons with disabilities” said Therina Wentzel, National Director for NCPPDSA. According to the 16th Commission for Employment Equity Annual Report 2015-2016, published by The Department of Labour, the number of persons with disabilities employed in 2015 have decreased from 2% in 2014 to 1.7% in 2015, in sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, catering, transport and community. “ The Casual Day project is about supporting persons with disabilities and by allowing APD NMB to manufacture merchandise for the project, we are demonstrating to the public that their R10 donation is going directly into empowering persons with disabilities. We also believe in the quality and the high standard of the products produced by the Ability brand, so it was easy for us to award the order to APD NMB” said Wentzel.

Ability manufactured the burgundy coloured T-shirts and buckets hats, which have the 2016 Casual Day theme, “Up Your Game”, printed on them. By wearing the merchandise people can show their support whilst contributing to the cause. “We are always grateful to our community members who donate and “sport” their support for the campaign by wearing the T-shirts with the Casual Day sticker on the day. This has sustained the campaign for 22 years, making a difference to many other beneficiaries who support persons with disabilities” said Marshall, Fundraising Manager of the Association of Persons with Disabilities in Nelson Mandela Bay.

The workshop is an employment programme where persons with disabilities are trained in design, printing, sewing and clothing production. It has been in business for over 76 years producing clothes for reputable retailers and produces proudly South African products by residents from the PE community. “It is has been privilege to see people who directly benefit from this massive initiative being the ones taking power into their own hands,” said Brett Marshall, Fundraising Manager of the Association of Persons with Disabilities in Nelson Mandela Bay.

This year, Casual Day will be celebrated on Friday, 2nd September with the 2016 theme, “Up your Game”, directed at sports and a way to call on everyone to “sport” their support. There are over 500 non-profit organisations and schools that benefit from the project throughout South Africa. Supporters can donate and get their stickers to show support of the cause at various major retailers or visit www.casualday.co.za or call 011 609 7006. The clothing items can be ordered and collected at various NGOs throughout the country. Contact Casual Day to find one of your nearest participating NGOs.