Hundreds of children and community members participated in the Pridwin Knight Run on 15 September in aid of the Baragwanath Burns Unit, raising R50 000 for the cause.
This is the seventh year that Pridwin Preparatory School in Melrose has partnered with the Baragwanath Paediatric Burns Unit, explained deputy principal Eswee Prinsloo.
“Our heart as a school lies with children, specifically hopeless children living in poor conditions. When we visited the unit, their hopelessness spoke to us as a school. Once we opened the door and saw what was going on at the unit, we could not close it,” said Prinsloo.
Past parent at the school, Lyndsay Barr, who runs the non-profit organisation Heal the Burns and initiated the school’s involvement in 2011 said, “The unit admits 400 children with burns per year, 25 per cent of whom require intensive care. The burns unit consists of a 26-bed general ward and a seven-bed intensive care unit.
“Most of the burn injuries occur as a result of accidents, usually hot water burns, but in winter months, we see a lot of flame burns, usually as a result of dangerous practices in poor informal settlements. The nature of these burns is such that the children often have long hospital stays, needing several operations in theatre to clean and skin-graft their burn areas.”
Prinsloo said he was pleased with the turnout of community members and the involvement of teachers on the day. About 600 people participated in the run, raising R50 000 for the unit.