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Posts Tagged ‘aid’

Passion on the Vine – a review

Tuesday, August 12th, 2008

When one looks at a vineyard – you’re not looking at it in the same way as you would look at an orange orchard. Instead one sees a multitude of experiences past and of moments yet to come – moments of intimacy, memorable occasions, conversations and treasured friendships. Since time immemorial, vineyards have not only been the touchstone of certain regions, but have often been the lifeblood of local communities and the cornerstone of entire generations of families. Every vineyard contains a family, a , a and a . This was at least, the sentiment I had before embarking on a mission to City, where I would promote and sell ’s connected to my family in some ways, and more importantly – from my country. During that time – having spent much time in for the mission, I left with those stories and sentiments of culture and family fresh in my blood. But with every -call and I began to feel further and further from the vineyard. Soon it was about laid in cost, case-discounts and what kind of Point of Sale material was on offer. I travelled the country in a rental car with a case of , a corskrew and a -point presentation along the way having people from Westchester Wine Warehouse cruelly spit wine on my shoe after having left me waiting for an hour, sitting in cold-rooms of cellars in Maryland, helping do stock-takes in Ohio, presenting to Wholefoods buyers in North Carolina and pushing on-premise retail in : and with every step I became a bit more confused and lost the focus of what I was doing. Having believed that wine was so important to my country and stepping into the States to tell the story of South African wine, it was very dispiriting to suddenly be faced with the fact that no one really cared so long as they could make a profit.


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Sunday, November 5th, 2006

In light of the recent hoo-hah about celebrity adoptions, it’s rather baffling to try sort out who rent bleachersis right. There have been enough blogs on this subject, so I will decline to comment on my position. As an African, all I can say is that it is rather warming to see such positive attention being paid to Africa. People in the Western and media are really driving positive changes and in the words of Bono ‘how wonderful it is to be the generation that can make a difference.’ From the Gap (Red) campaign, to the Mastercard Aids campaign, Aldo shoes Aids awareness and so many other instances of branded philanthropy, it is an inspiration to see so many companies waking up to the necessity of branded philanthropy.

Even the symbol of the continent of Africa has become somewhat reified in today’s media and is right up there in the realm of Cher and Mickey Mouse. Despite what all the cynics may say about celebrity involvement, I think that it is our duty to suspend our scepticism, lest we deter such influential people from bestowing their support on an entire continent in need. I think that passing proceeds along from products that Westerners buy every day is an excellent way of allowing people to contribute without requiring them to make too great a change from their lifestyle. In the words or the Red campaign

‘You make choices every day, from the clothes you wear to the music you play. Now making a choice means making a difference.’

So many young people feel frustrated at not being able to help the world, and I think that charities have the responsibility to make contribution easier than actually having to go out and join the Peace Corps.

Here are a few great ways to make a difference:

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