Here’s the inspiring story of an attendant at a Shell petrol station in South Africa and how a singular act of kindness from him has started a chain of overwhelming sense of charity across the country.
And it gets better because the company he works for, the global fuel company, Shell, has also been inspired by this act and has since decided to make a donation to a charity of his choice as well as have him nominated for the Shell Service Awards – an international event that honours the employees representing the organization in the best way possible.
And this is how it all started:
Nkosikho Mbele, the petrol attendant, decided to part away with R100 ($6.67) from his pocket for a motorist, Monet van Deventer, who was in distress. Monet, an account manager, was at the pump getting her car tank filled when she noticed the embarrassment coming her way. It became obvious to Nkosikho what was about to happen and then he came in with that ‘perfect save.’
Why? He was worried Van Deventer would get stuck along a notorious stretch of the N2 if she did not put petrol in her car.
It was an act of kindness that was expected to stay, at least for as long as it mattered, between only the two people but Monet thought that sharing the good deed of this man with the rest of the world could just encourage someone. And so he did. And the story did spark a lot of goodwill online.
Monet van Deventer then launched a crowdfunding mission for Mbele, using that as an opportunity to further thank him for his act of kindness.
Mbele didn’t see this coming but that crowdfunding account spiralled and in a single weekend, Backabuddy (the crowdfunding platform on which this was started) noted that the campaign had raised over R400 000 ($27,000). And the charitable donations haven’t stopped there.
Shell was so touched by this act of kindness by their employee so much that a call came through from the South African Shell Country Chairman, Hloniphizwe Mtolo, announcing to him the decision by the company to donate half a million South African Rand to a charity organization of his choice.
Additionally, Mbele will join other dignitaries and nominees in Tanzania for the Shell Service Awards later in the year.
Totally motivated by the results of his kind generosity, Mbele intends to keep the wheel of good deeds running. He hopes that by investing the money – which at the moment is being managed in a Backabuddy account – in the education of his children, they can also one day show others who need it the most some great form of kindness; the Mbele kind.
However, keen-eyed social media users who read the campaign’s description box and terms and conditions on Backabuddy noted that the funds raised would not go directly to him and would instead be managed by the crowd-funding platform.
The site which hosted the campaign then confirmed this via Twitter.
Enraged and unhappy about this policy which they believe will deny the very person who kicked this off with his act of kindness, people took to Twitter to share their conspiracy theories about it.