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Boxed love shared
Cherie van Niekerk with one of the Love Boxes. She regularly delivers boxes like these to childcare centres across the city.Photo: Lientjie Mentz

Children all over Bloemfontein cannot wait for their regular visit from Cherie van Niekerk.

Every quarter 260 children from childcare centres across the city are treated to a Love Box. This is part of the African Mining and Crushing (AMC) charity programme, Credo Home of Hope.

Leandri Hopkins, marketing manager at the AMC, says the project was started by Warwick Hughes, chief executive officer, in an effort to give back to the Bloemfontein community.

Cherie van Niekerk is in charge of Credo and coordinates the packing and the delivering of boxes to the centres.

“When I started a few years ago, we delivered boxes to only a few of Engo’s childcare centres,” Van Niekerk says.

“Now, children in 18 childcare facilities receive boxes.

“The Kidz Care Trust, working with street children, and Therapéa Kids in Fichardtpark are now also part of this initiative, as well as all the Engo child­care centres in and around Bloem­fontein.”

Members of the public help with packing boxes, filling each with clothes, toiletries and special gifts.

Apart from the boxes, Credo also supplies vegetables and fruit to these houses twice a month.

Hopkins says the AMC is very thankful for the public’s support, which makes these and other projects possible.

“During the lockdown we could not distribute the Love Boxes,” she says.

“Instead, we donated and asked our supporters to donate money so Cherie could pack necessities for each child.”

Van Niekerk says they always need more people to help.

“We’ll now begin with the December boxes, which also include a Christmas present for each child.”

Each box contains clothes and necessities to the value of around R500, with an added Christmas gift in November.

Christa Maree, director of residential childcare at Engo, says the boxes make each child feel that they belong and that someone really cares.

“To feel cherished helps with the physical, mental and emotional development of each child. We thank everyone who pack these boxes with so much care and love,” says Maree.

Call Van Niekerk on 081-344-0253.

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