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AutoTrader shares the Christmas spirit with the Santa Shoebox Project

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Company-wide drive saw 156 AutoTrader staff participate in bringing joy to children’s lives

PACKED, wrapped and awaiting the sheer joy of children on Christmas Day – that’s the outcome of the generosity inherent in AutoTrader’s staff members who donated 178 boxes towards the annual Santa Shoebox Project.

156 AutoTrader staff members opened their hearts and wallets for the worthy cause by dropping off their completed boxes in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban.

Originating in Cape Town in 2006 with 180 shoeboxes, the Santa Shoebox Project currently distributes gifts to more than 1000 recipient facilities each year through 60 satellite offices around South Africa and Namibia.

This year’s collection target was 110000 shoeboxes with each colourfully decorated standard-sized shoebox including a toothbrush, toothpaste, facecloth, soap, new toy, an outfit of clothing, school supplies and sweets.

“This initiative has a significant place in South Africa’s social fabric by providing recipients with essential equipment for their education and also allowing them to experience the pleasure of new clothing and a treasured toy,” AutoTrader CEO George Mienie says.

He says AutoTrader has contributed to numerous charities over the years including participating in the Qhubeka campaign to support the World Bicycle Relief programme in South Africa. That initiative saw 360 bicycles donated to learners attending Kwabhekilanga Secondary School in Alexandra township in June 2016. AutoTrader’s #DriveChange campaign followed a two-month national fund-raising tour to 10 shopping centres across Durban, Johannesburg, Cape Town and Pretoria. Mienie says the public were invited to add their artistic contribution to a 52-vehicle strong fleet of AutoTrader vehicles for a donation of R50, effectively creating uniquely coloured-in car branding. “AutoTrader raised R250000 for that initiative, amounting to 100 of the 360 bicycles being donated directly due to the company’s generosity and community dedication,” he says.

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