How can a Canadian shopping centre professional based in India, help over 5000 needy young musicians in South Africa through his volunteer involvement with a California drum and bugle corps? “Facebook and the power of social media” says Phil McArthur, Senior Vice President of Ivanhoe Cambridge India.
McArthur has always believed that shopping centers make a positive social and economic difference in the communities where they operate. This 30-year veteran of the mall business and International Council of Shopping Centers Past Trustee is also a keen supporter of the South African Field Band Foundation.
“The kids in this program are from the poorest and most challenged households in South Africa. Not only do the students learn music and dance but they also find a safe environment to explore their personal potential as young people living in a turbulent society and to help them rise out of poverty.” said McArthur.
In 2007, McArthur and his wife Debra attended the ICSC World Congress in Cape Town, South Africa where they had a chance to visit the townships and meet the residents and learn of their challenges. In 2009, McArthur returned to South Africa to learn more about the Field Band Foundation.
“I recently was very happy to learn that the award winning Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps of Concord California have chosen to help the South Africa Field Band Foundation through Chase Bank’s charitable donation program on Facebook” said McArthur. “People do not have to donate money, they simply have to access their Facebook accounts, open Chase Community Giving and vote for the Blue Devils”.
McArthur is keen to ask all shopping center professionals and customers to vote and to spread the word on Facebook for the Blue Devils’ One Music One World proposal. (http://bluedevils.org/omow).
Voting begins May 19 and runs till May 25.