HOT Cares and Dis-Chem Step in to Help Paralysed Boy with New Bed

HOT Cares and Dis-Chem Step in to Help Paralysed Boy with New Bed

Hot Cares and Dis Chem Foundation Divan blog

Our hearts go out to the Nieuwoudt family and specifically, young Divan.

The poor 14-year-old and his mom were involved in an awful car accident three weeks ago and their plight was brought to our attention by Chantal Lawson, who works with Divan’s dad, Christo, at Tiletoria.

“Divan was trapped in the wreck of the car while waiting for emergency services,” says Chantal. “They needed to use the jaws of life to rescue him from the wreck. With no medical aid, he was rushed to the nearest public hospital. A day later he was operated on for over 12 hours, but unfortunately Divan is now paralysed from the hips down.”

Just an awful story and a real ordeal for the Nieuwoudt family. Divan remains at Baragwanath Hospital and is receiving daily physiotherapy, but his parents are only allowed to visit him for 15 minutes a day.

“As you can imagine, this teenage boy is going through the toughest time of his life, dealing with his new reality, and he cannot even lean on his parents emotionally to guide him through each day,” says Chantal. “The 15 minutes they get to see him is mostly spent tending to his basic needs, instead providing much-needed emotional support.”

In order for Divan to return home, his family needs to attend to certain other basic needs, of which a suitable bed appears the most urgent right now. According to Chantal, he needs an electronic bed in order for him to be able to put his back up himself, as well as pull his legs up, with the electronic support, so that he can get from the bed and into the wheelchair himself.

“This will be his only independence right now,” says Chantal. “As a mom of my own, energetic, stubborn 14-year-old boy, I know how much this would mean to him. I am really hoping Hot Cares can reach out to your network and see if there is anyone who can assist this family with the bed that Divan needs. Even a second-hand bed would do perfectly, as I know they are quite expensive.”

Well, here at Hot Cares we can go one better. That’s because we have fantastic partners like the Dis-Chem Foundation, and together with them we will be purchasing Divan a brand-new Homecare Avante SmartFlex3 adjustable bed with an orthopaedic mattress, to make his transition at home as smooth as possible, as well as some Dis-Chem products, with the total value of this gift, R28 000!

We acknowledge, though, that the Nieuwoudt family needs plenty of help, so if you’d like to contribute to Divan’s treatment, send us an email at

Similarly, if you have a programme you’d like to partner with Hot Cares on, or want to alert us to a particular story, please send a mail to the same address.

HOT Cares Gets Behind KZN Relief Project

HOT Cares Gets Behind KZN Relief Project

Most of us know someone affected by the recent devastating floods in KwaZulu-Natal, and it’s been heart-breaking seeing what the people of the province have been through.

That’s why Hot Cares has such respect for the work done by people like Neil Golding, the owner of DC Coffee and the man behind the ‘KZN Relief Project’. 

“As a Johannesburg-based business with community impact at the core of our business, we are leading and mobilising our local community to contribute towards relief efforts in KZN,” said Neil.

His organisation is collecting a range of items they hope will go just a little way towards easing the pain of the people most affected.

They include:

  • essential care packs for babies (nappies, formula etc)
  • food/family care parcels (water, dried foodstuffs, tinned food, maize, beans, oil, rice, blankets, clothing, plastic bowls)
  • animal care packs (pet food, animal blankets)

“Over and above what is listed above, we will also be compiling frontline ‘worker jars’ for the volunteers and search and rescue teams on the frontlines,” said Neil. 

The KZN Relief Project also has a local partner in the province – the Domino Foundation, which is an accredited relief organisation providing support to 27 halls within nine informal communities affected in KZN.

“They are one of the main umbrella organisations facilitating efforts in the region and we will be distributing all items through them with 100% accountability in place,” said Neil. “We are also plugging into Brenda’s Angels, which is a registered animal welfare organisation supplying a lot of the K9 rescue dogs to the search operations. They also work with the SPCA and other local animal welfare organisations, and will manage the distribution of our donations.” 

The KZN Relief Project is sending trucks down to KZN and is encouraging members of the public to join them in donating whatever they can.  

Items can be dropped off at the DC Coffee Co store at Shop 1, 18 Sunset Avenue, Pineslopes before Thursday the 28th of April. For more info, Neil can be contacted on 064 535 0734 and all details will be available on their social pages (@dccoffeeco). Financial donations are also possible.

So, how can Hot Cares help and play a part in this outstanding initiative?

Well, we’d like to contribute to the list of things most needed by the poor people of KZN, particularly the little ones. So, Hot Cares will be delivering R5000 worth of baby supplies, nappies, formula, bottles, dummies, wet wipes, and lotions to DC Coffee, ahead of the trip down south.

If you have a programme you’d like to partner with Hot Cares on, or want to alert us to a particular story, please send an email to

HOT Cares Makes Up Shortfall on Much-Needed Wheelchair

HOT Cares Makes Up Shortfall on Much-Needed Wheelchair

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Here at Hot Cares, we often marvel at the number of selfless people there are out there, doing amazing things for people other than themselves.

Thanks to a mail we received from Kelly von Holdt, it’s clear that Toni Wagenaar is such a person.

Kelly calls her a “super-hero and a selfless mother”, and we can see why.

Toni works six days a week as a hairdresser, but also volunteers at the Jukskei Park Community Forum, all while looking after 24-year-old son Keagan, whose father is not involved in his life.

“From the day I first met Toni, she’s always spoken proudly of Keagan,” says Kelly. “As I got to know her, I learned that Toni has lived her life to make the world a better place for Keagan, who was diagnosed with Friedreich Ataxia (muscular and neural degenerative disease) at the age of 12.”

Keagan’s welfare rests squarely on Toni’s shoulders and this has obviously greatly impacted their lives over the years. For example, their previous home was adapted to make it completely wheelchair-friendly for Keagan, from hand-rails and a ramp into the swimming pool to bathroom adaptations and chair lifts.

Sadly, that home of 20 years – and most of their possessions – were eventually sold, as Toni and Keagan moved to the UK in a bid to receive better assistance from the NHS, due to the fact that they are both UK citizens.

Unfortunately, the move didn’t work out as hoped, with private care for Keagan costing more than anticipated. That resulted in Toni and Keagan moving back to South Africa.

“I believe that exercise cost Toni a lot of money and set her back quite a bit, financially,” says Kelly. “I know she made the decision thinking it would be best for Keagan, but it turned out that they lived a better life here with affordable help.”

Keagan really needs a new wheelchair, but the type he needs is very expensive, so Toni actually started a Backabuddy donation page on Facebook, in an attempt to raise money.

When she did that, Toni actually had a birthday coming up and on the Backabuddy page explained that instead of gifts that any friends might want to give her, she asked that people rather contribute money to Keagan’s new wheelchair.

“That, for me, shows the selflessness of Toni as a mom,” says Kelly, “and I really hope that Hot Cares can make her birthday wish come true. “The wheelchair costs R60 000 and Toni is currently R26 995 short.”

This story really touched our hearts here at Hot Cares and we’re fortunate to be in a position to help Toni on her birthday, with the gift she wants. So, we’re going to be making up that shortfall and donating R27 000 to a new wheelchair for Keegan! We hope that this goes some way to easing his pain.

If you have a programme you’d like to partner with Hot Cares on, or want to alert us to a particular story, please send an email to

HOT Cares and Dis-Chem Foundation Come Together to Provide the Gift of Sight

HOT Cares and Dis-Chem Foundation Come Together to Provide the Gift of Sight

Dis Chem Foundation Hot Cares Lerato Hlatshwayo blog


There are many things in life that a lot of us take for granted and our basic senses are among them.

That’s just simple sight, hearing, smell etc.

That’s why Hot Cares appreciates just how distressing it must be to lose one of these vital faculties that play a huge role in our everyday lives.

In this regard, Hot Cares was contacted by Lerato Hlatshwayo, who wrote to us to request help in raising funds for pterygium surgery.

Pterygium surgery is a procedure performed to remove non-cancerous conjunctiva growths, called pterygia, which develop in the eye. The conjunctiva is the transparent tissue that covers the white part of the eye.  

“I’ve had pterygium since my teens and had a first consultation at St John Eye Hospital in 2001,” said Lerato. “Their eye specialist advised me not to have an operation then, as re-occurrence is very high, and once you have had an operation you can’t have another one. He said I should wait until my mid-30s-40 to have an operation. Now I am a few months shy of 40 and my eyesight is quickly deteriorating, and I would like to save it before things get worse.”

Unfortunately, Lerato is currently unemployed and doesn’t have medical aid.

She clearly needs help and even went as far as to attach a selfie of her eye and a screenshot of a quote she received for the medical procedure. 

“Any kind of help regarding this would be greatly appreciated,” she said, and this just touched everyone here at Hot Cares.

We just want to do whatever we can to help Lerato regain the sight in her eye, so we went straight to our extensive network and came up with something.

Hot Cares enjoys such a fantastic relationship with the Dis-Chem Foundation and they seemed like the perfect partner for this sort of project. Fortunately, they agreed, without hesitation!  

Jacqueline from the Dis-Chem Foundation proceeded to join Jo’burg’s Hottest Breakfast Show on HOT 102.7FM with the news that the foundation had committed to covering Lerato’s pterygium surgery, valued at R21 000!

Just amazing news, so a huge thank you to the Dis-Chem Foundation!

If you have a programme you’d like to partner with Hot Cares on, or want to alert us to a particular story, please send an email to

HOT Cares Steps in to Help SA Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre

HOT Cares Steps in to Help SA Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre

sawrc hot cares blog

The South African Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre is a non-profit organisation based just outside Springs and it does such fantastic work helping indigenous animals in Gauteng.

That’s why Hot Cares is pleased to get behind this organisation and encourage others to support their efforts.

The SA Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre is one of only three wildlife rehabilitation centres in Gauteng and is fully permitted to work with and treat indigenous animals. It is governed and authorized by the Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD), and its specialized permits allow it to take in indigenous wildlife, including threatened and protected species.

“On average, we take in 6000 to 7000 cases a year, with the aim of rehabilitating and releasing wildlife back into sustainable, safe, natural areas, where they will have the best chance of going on to complete the natural cycle of a free life,” says Founder and CEO, Judy Davidson. “Injuries range from cat victims to road impacts, poisoning, and animals injured by fire or an electric/razor wire fence, through to natural territorial conflicts and sickness. We also deal with cases resulting from extreme weather conditions and environmental disasters.”

The SA Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre is able to call on the services of experienced vets and takes in animals from all over the province.

“There are still many of our smaller mammals found living in human settlements and we often get Spotted Genets, servals, mongooses, otters, rock hyraxes (dassies) and jackals brought in for help,” says Judy. “We’ve even had pangolins and recently took in a sub-adult leopard!”

The clinic works closely with GDARD inspectors, who frequently confiscate wildlife kept illegally by members of the public. These animals are brought in and remain in their care until there’s a resolution and the animal can be placed in a suitable environment.

Most of these cases, along with the orphans that are hand-reared, and even some long-term injury cases, are eventually released using a “soft” or “slow” release method.

The rehabilitation centre relies on corporate sponsors and donations to sustain itself, as the running costs to house and feed the animals, and pay a small team of permanent employees, is approximately R45 000 a month.

The SA Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre has a number of items on its ‘wish list’ – all central to ensuring the sustainability of the organisation – and Hot Cares is pleased to be able to help in some small way, purchasing some of these items, to the value of R5000!

If you have a programme you’d like to partner with Hot Cares on, or want to alert us to a particular story, please send an email to