Christmas Wish is an opportunity to lend a hand to individuals that need a little more than a bit of Christmas cheer. While 2020 has been trying on us all, Janalke De Beer ushered in the year caring for her husband, who had just undergone an esophagectomy in December 2019 (for esophageal cancer).

January also brought the devastating news that Andrew’s cancer had metastasized to his stomach and he would have to undergo chemo and radiation. Janalke recounts: “He underwent vigorous radiation and chemotherapy and was told at the end of July to return to the hospital on the 9th of October to do all the scans to find out if the treatment worked. After the last chemo and radiation, which he had every day for 6 weeks, he was just not the same. His health declined rapidly and on the 21st of September we had taken him back to the hospital. His blood pressure was 30/70 and his heart rate 42bpm and was severely dehydrated. He was admitted and never came out of the hospital.”

Andrew De Beer passed away on October the 9th 2020, due to metastatic esophageal cancer at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital.

To add insult to injury, Janalke found herself wrapped up with the red tape of paperwork: the funeral policy didn’t pay out, Andrew’s employers haven’t paid out his full salary and are deducting inexplicable sundry amounts leaving Janalke, a young widow and mother of 3 in a truly tricky situation. Having to stay strong for the kids and maintain some normalcy for them, while battling financial strain, planning a funeral, navigating insurance and workplace bureaucracy, as well as her own grief.

Last Christmas, Andrew was in hospital, and this Christmas, the kids are without their father, so there is very little Christmas spirit in the house.

While we cannot erase the pain and tribulations the De Beer family endured over the past 3 years, Hot Cares wants to alleviate the load where possible. Lee-Anne Myerson – owner of Nature and Nurture Montessori Pre-Schools has offered 2 x Nurture and Nature Montessori Pre-School bursaries valued at R360 000 – covering school fees, a daily hot lunch and stationery from the time they start until they move on.

Hot Cares thought because Christmas simply won’t be the same, let’s make Christmas lunch as stress free as possible. We will be delivering a selection of all the traditional Christmas lunch meats and Christmas presents to the De Beer house to try make the festive season special for Janalke’s three young children.

To round out what has been an extraordinarily trying year, we’re throwing in grocery voucher to see the De Beers through the dry January to come.