Letsema La Bana, an initiative established by the South African Police Service (SAPS) to assist and support the families of SAPS members who lost their lives in the line of duty, received a heartfelt boost during a recent event to help SAPS members’ children.
Recent statistics* have revealed that South Africa has one of the highest rates of police officer deaths globally. Between April 2020 and March 2022, 53 police officers lost their lives while diligently serving their country. These brave men and women fearlessly placed themselves in harm’s way to safeguard their communities, and Letsema La Bana strives to honour their sacrifice by offering support to their families.
The Letsema La Bana initiative initially came to the attention of the Johannesburg Expo Centre at the Rand Show, where SAPS was one of the exhibitors. Recognising the importance of this remarkable initiative, the Johannesburg Expo Centre approached one of its esteemed partners, the Hollywood Foundation, to become a sponsor. Hollywood Foundation gladly embraced the opportunity to contribute to this worthy cause and generously donated school bags and school shoes to the children of the deceased SAPS members.
“We at The Rand Show and Johannesburg Expo Centre are immensely proud to continue supporting the Letsema La Bana initiative,” affirms Adele Hartdegen, CEO of Johannesburg Expo Centre. “We recognise the unwavering commitment and dedication of our police officers and their families. Letsema La Bana provides a platform to honour their memory and extend much-needed support to their loved ones.”
The Hollywood Foundation is a community-focused organisation committed to restoring hope and transforming lives through corporate social investment (CSI), bursaries, enterprise and supplier development, and other meaningful efforts. The foundation’s involvement in this campaign represents its dedication to uplifting communities and bridging societal gaps in the face of numerous challenges.
Zukisa Mbaza, CSI Administrator at Hollywood Foundation, expressed the organisation’s deep commitment to the Letsema La Bana initiative: “Our involvement in this campaign is a testament to our unwavering commitment to uplifting communities and our determination to address the existing gaps in society. This program holds a special place in our hearts as it empowers the lives of children who have endured the loss of their parents while serving our country. Today, we have not only positively impacted the lives of these children but also brought a sense of relief and put smiles on their faces. This significant contribution means a lot to us as it aligns with our ongoing efforts to restore hope and create lasting change.”
Major General Patricia Rampota, speaking on behalf of the South African Police Management, expressed gratitude to Hollywood Foundation and the Johannesburg Expo Centre for their kind and thoughtful gesture: “It is my honour and privilege to be part of this special handover of school bags and school shoes to the children of our deceased members who lost their lives in the line of duty. Being a police officer is not easy, as we often lose our members due to individuals who fail to respect their lives. We, as the South African Police Management, are truly grateful to Hollywood Foundation and the Johannesburg Expo Centre for their generous donation, which holds tremendous significance for us. It takes a community to raise children, and we thank them for being an invaluable part of our police community.”
*Based on information derived from the South African Police Service (SAPS) annual reports.