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  • Enable customer donations through your business

    As a business, there are many ways you can support your community. Providing an easy way to help your customers donate to charitable causes can really help magnify your efforts.

    Setting: Workplace

    Want to try this?

    There may be some people who want to join you.

    Organization/people involved

    Cape Heritage Hotel, Cape Town, South Africa

    Anja Du Plessis, General Manager

    What they did

    Five years ago, the Cape Heritage Hotel implemented a voluntary charitable contribution option so that guests staying at the hotel could support a local charity, Zip Zap Circus School. Zip Zap programs “provide opportunities for young South Africans from very different backgrounds to play, learn, and live together using the medium of circus training and performance to model and demonstrate the possibility of true coexistence.” A contribution of 10 Rand (approx. 1 USD) is raised for every night the guest stays, and guests are also welcome to increase their contribution if they wish.

    How you can do it


    On average, 85 to 90 percent of guests are happy to add the contribution to their room bill.

    Thousands of dollars have been donated to the charity, and it has been the starting point for other support the hotel gives to them. The hotel donates items such as towels and linen as well as staff time. Anja Du Plessis, the general manager at the hotel, spends one day a week working for Zip Zap, assisting with project management and human resource issues. In addition, the hotel supports Zip Zap's yearly fundraiser by donating auction prizes, accommodation vouchers, and wine from their 250-year-old vineyard.

    Big Takeaways

    All staff should have a personal connection or buy-in to the organization, and the business needs an effective communication plan for their customers.

    Once you start a program like this, Anja says that it can inspire your company to get involved with the community. Their hotel plans to implement additional ideas, including volunteering at a children’s hospital, participating in a food drive, joining a beach clean-up, and more.


    Photo credit: Zip Zap Circus

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