On 9 August 2014, the Montevideo Charity Committee celebrated national Children’s Day by with their chosen charity of the year, Unidos. In the run-up to this special event, 60 Trafigura volunteers collected cash donations and toys of dolls and footballs, along with snack-time supplies of cocoa and sugar. Until recently the Unidos children had been welcomed in a borrowed shipping container, but, thanks to a new government ruling elevating Unidos’ status to an official Children’s Club, the NGO can now move to move to more spacious premises. Even before receiving this good news, everyone was in high spirits on Children’s Day: around 20 Trafigura employees gave up their Saturday to travel to the city’s deprived Villa Espanola district, distributing presents and hosting a morning of fun activities with 60 of the Club children and extended families. With a grant from the Trafigura Foundation, the Montevideo Charity Committee will help Unidos refurbish the new location and funds will also be available to recruit a psychologist, a teaching assistant and ease the long waiting list of children eager to receive extra educational support.
“We’re pleased to report that Unidos has now secured larger premises, enabling them to double their intake of children, and secure official charity status.”
Following on from the August event, Trafigura volunteers visited the centre in October to hand out school supplies. These had been collected by the Charity Committee and matched by the local office stationery supplier. November will see Traf volunteers return to Unidos with proceeds from a bake sale and to organise an international day – part of a plan for next year to encourage the children to learn English.