William Clark Gardens, charity winner of the Crown Foundation prize
January 15, 2018
Giving back’ is built into Crown’s DNA. Recently, as part of Crown’s 50th birthday celebrations, the Crown Foundation committed to providing 5 Crown countries an amount of USD 10,000. The competition was open to all 58 countries Crown operate in, based on a number of questions, and each country was only allowed to enter one charity, which had to be grass-roots in nature. Crown Durban immediately put their entry forward for William Clark Gardens, a children’s home they have supported over the 5 years. The home creates a safe space for neglected and abused children between the ages of 6-18, and acts of place of healing. Their government funding runs dry by mid-month, and the staff work tirelessly to make ends meet.
South Africa was one of the 5 countries selected, and the Durban team made their way to William Clark to tell them about the win in person. We had a teary and elated meeting about how best to manage the funds.
The home is meant to act as a place of healing but the aesthetics of the 6 cottages are in desperate need of some TLC. We agreed to purchase 12 new leather couches, and bright beanbags, for each living room. We also felt an ‘experience’ for the children is something that doesn’t get considered. We arranged an outing to watch the new Pixar movie in 3D, had a meal together at a restaurant and took a walk down to the Durban promenade afterwards. The children sang and danced with the beautiful Indian Ocean as their backdrop, and it was a humbling experience to watch them be care-free children for the day. Most of them would never have been to a movie or restaurant before.
We have only spent around half the funds, and the rest we want to use to fix their bedroom doors to which are almost unusable; and provide new flooring.
We will continue to partner with these wonderful children for many years to come. We’re overjoyed to be one of the 5 winners to be able to provide them with a much-needed investment in creating the comforting environment they stand for.