Pink Drive Mobile Vans reach vulnerable South Africans in remote locations to drive vaccinations and cancer screening
Marking Cancer Month in October, Bridgestone Southern Africa has raised R500 000 in its #PinkValveCaps Project towards fighting breast cancer and ramping up the vaccination drive to people in remote regions. Bridgestone handed over the cheque to PinkDrive, the public benefit organisation dedicated to fighting breast cancer at its head office in Midrand on the 18th of October.
The project is a national cancer initiative that raises funds to educate South Africans about cancer across Bridgestone’s network around the country. The #PinkValveCaps are sold at R50 (per set of four) at all Bridgestone’s Retail Partner, Supa Quick fitment centres.
“As Bridgestone evolves beyond just being a tyre company to provide total mobility solutions, the health and safety of South Africans is very close to our hearts,” says Bridgestone Chief People Officer, Julia Modise. “It was especially inspiring to see that PinkDrive, while continuing its strong and enduring dedication to providing vital cancer checks, is also expanding its efforts to providing vaccination to the most vulnerable people in our communities around the country.”
Bridgestone began its partnership with PinkDrive in 2013, and in that year contributed towards its first mobile mammography unit, which offers free screening services, especially to those located in remote regions.
This important resource comes with a complete mammographic radiographic system, with an x-ray generator, and an x-ray tube with a framework. A recording medium is housed in the PinkDrive Screening Truck, with a trained medical team to accurately process and record results.
Over the years, Bridgestone’s #PinkValveCaps project has helped acquire more mammography unit units, which travel to urban and semi-urban areas to make sure that people without medical insurance get access to cancer screening services. These services include free education on women’s health, free mammograms, pap smears, clinical examinations, and information on how to do breast self-examinations.
Additionally, Bridgestone provides maintenance of the PinkDrive mobile units, offering regular tyre donations when needed – these are used on the vehicles as they travel to remote areas.
This year, PinkDrive provides vehicles and drivers to assist in providing vaccinations in Gauteng, the Western Cape, and KwaZulu-Natal with a special focus on homeless shelters, old age homes, soup kitchens, and shelters for victims of gender-based violence to ensure that the most vulnerable are not left behind in the vaccination efforts. Some donations are allocated to upskilling formerly unemployed nurses who are now administering vaccinations while earning an income.
“The continued and enduring support from Bridgestone has enabled PinkDrive to empower South Africans around the country about cancer prevention and treatment,” PinkDrive founder and CEO, Nolene Kotshan. “These valuable contributions have now allowed us to join the fight against the Pandemic and ensure that those who need vaccines but have difficulties in reaching vaccination sites are reached safely and efficiently way, thus saving lives.”