Now in its 27th year of operation, the MySchool programme is a South African fundraising success story. Originally established to help parents raise funds for their children’s school, the concept expanded to include ‘villages’ and the ‘planet’, as other worthy causes saw the potential to motivate their supporters to get involved.

Today, there are over 8 000 beneficiaries registered with MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet. Collectively, they have received over R1 billion from the programme. Operation Smile is one of them, and we are incredibly grateful for the regular, monthly income we receive, which helps fund crucial surgical programmes for children born with cleft conditions.

So how does MySchool Work?

Essentially the MySchool programme rewards customer loyalty. Not with points or cash back incentives – but by donating a percentage of whatever the customer spends at the till to the beneficiary of their choice.

It’s a collective action. Millions of consumers are able to generate substantial funding towards the betterment of our country, our world and our planet, without spending anything extra.

All you have to do is swipe your free MySchool card at the till when you shop at Woolworths.

How can I join the MySchool programme?

Joining the programme couldn’t be easier. Just go to and sign up for your free card. Or download the free app. You can choose up to three different schools or charities to support – and you can change them whenever you want. If you have a Woolworths card, you can link it directly to your preferred school or charity.

You receive a monthly email statement showing how much your beneficiary has received from the MySchool programme, so you can see exactly how your participation is making a difference. Chances are you’ll be amazed by the power of the MySchool ‘swipe’ to fund the important work being carried out by your charity.

Why choose to link your MySchool Card to Operation Smile South Africa?

Funds raised through the MySchool programme go towards surgery and follow up care for children born with cleft conditions. Without Operation Smile, many of these children would not have access to specialised surgery and world class aftercare, which could include additional operations, dental work and speech therapy.

Since the money is paid directly into our bank account every month, it allows us to plan ahead, knowing that funding is available as it is needed. As more people join the programme, or choose Operation Smile as an additional beneficiary, this regular, dependable income increases.



Positive Impact

Pieter Twine, General Manager of MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet, is very supportive of our work.

“The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet programme is directly involved with many NGOs that do life-changing work,” he said. “Few, however, have such an immediate and sustainable impact as Operation Smile. They positively impact the lives of the child, the family unit, and the community. It is a life-changing experience to witness the transformation with every operation done.”

Sarah Scarth, Executive Director of Operation Smile South Africa, explains that the longer a child born with a cleft must wait for surgery, the more serious their health, developmental and psychological problems will likely be. The good news is that cleft conditions can be surgically repaired in as little as 45 minutes by a specialist medical team.

“We believe everyone born with a cleft deserves access to safe surgery and comprehensive care,” she said.



Operation Smile South Africa, in partnership with the Mpumalanga Department of Health and supported by MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet, recently brought together a team of medical volunteers from across South Africa. During a three-day surgical programme at Rob Ferreira Hospital, Mbombela, they transformed the lives of 35 children with cleft lip and cleft palate.

This would not have been possible without the support of hundreds of shoppers, swiping their MySchool cards with every purchase. Grateful thanks to all who support the programme, and who have chosen Operation Smile as one of their beneficiaries.

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