Bulls players reading fairy tales for children with cancer

Bulls winger Cornal Hendricks reads A Dragon In My Bed to raise money for Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa. Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa

Bulls players have added storytelling to their skillsets in a bid to help children affected by the coronavirus lockdown in South Africa.

The players, who are currently unable to train or play after the Super Rugby competition was shutdown by the coronavirus pandemic, are sharing video clips in which they read bedtime stories to raise money for the Childhood Cancer Foundation (CHOC) in South Africa.

Specifically, the players from the Pretoria-based franchise are seeking to raise money for, and awareness of, the CHOC House in Centurion, which that provides a home away from home for families of children living far away who must travel to Pretoria for treatment at the paediatric oncology units.

South Africa has been in national lockdown for more than four weeks, and CHOC says the coronavirus pandemic has caused "a significant increase" in demand for services.

"In addition, and of great concern, is the fact that children and teens who are undergoing treatment, and those who are in remission, are at higher risk of contracting the coronavirus by virtue of their compromised immune systems," CHOC said in a statement released by the Bulls.

"Whilst the world is in lockdown it is virtually impossible for children who are undergoing treatment to be safe indoors as they need to continue with their life saving treatment.

"The economic situation in which we find ourselves means that there is a large percentage of individuals who are currently unemployed. It is this reality that many of our families are facing. Without any form of income they are unable to transport their children to and from the hospital, are unable to provide the necessary nutritional requirements the child needs to stay health and are not in a position to afford accommodation close to the specialised treatment during a long treatment period."