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2020 The year of plenty…

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Lynda Bryant
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2020 the year of plenty we were all loudly declaring as we welcomed in a new decade as the New Year was rung in. Little did we know that a largely unknown virus was lurking in China and would affect all of us in ways we could never have imagined. It certainly did end up being the year of plenty but not quite what we had in mind… Plenty of masks, plenty of sanitiser, plenty of vitamins, plenty of anxiety and plenty of change.

What a year it has been. All I hear from all sides is I can’t wait for this year to be over. I don’t think anyone has come out unscathed whether it be financially, mentally or healthwise. I often wonder what our future generations will say and read about this time that we have lived through. Some days I look at our shops and see people with masks, screens and never-ending sanitiser supplies and think that we may just have landed on another planet.

Thrive has had its share of the never-ending corona-coaster ride but nevertheless has had some noteworthy highlights during this strange time. We were thrilled to announce the opening of our second store in Ballito in March and were bravely going to test our health and wellness model as we waited patiently for the Dept of Health to issue us our pharmacy licence there. Due to the lockdown this took longer than we thought and then had the opportunity to move our store to a new location in the Ballito village which we decided would be a good move for us and we proudly opened the full Thrive offering there this month with a pharmacy, health shop, juice kitchen and clinic. We also acquired the much loved Hilton Pharmacy in October and together with our partner, Kim Germiquet, are in the process of converting this community icon to a Thrive Hilton early next year. We are so excited to see the growth of Thrive in new communities and really are striving to ensure that we can offer something meaningful and make a difference in the communities that we serve. We continue to aim to keep our communities and staff better than well in all aspects of life.

As we end off an unprecedented year, I can only reflect on the positives that I have seen emerge out of this year of plenty. What stands out for me the most, is the amazing team that have supported myself, my partners, Thrive and our communities this year. While everyone else went onto Zoom meetings in their slippers, we ventured out the house daily with trepidation into the unknown, faced customers (sometimes 100s of people a day) armed only with sanitisers and a mask to protect themselves and their loved ones. Our Thrive team bravely faced their own fears and anxiety, put on a mask and not only served the community in front of them but embraced the customers pain, hardships and stories as if they were their own. As we went home every evening and stripped off clothes, showered and washed hair before embracing children and loved ones, the overriding message that I had from the team is that we had to keep ourselves better than well so that we can ensure we can serve our communities.

This Thrive team came together and helped, loved and supported each other. In the face, often, sadly, of adversity, with people not understanding why we were doing things or didn’t feel we were doing enough, they smiled, were patient and kind, stood up for each other, stood in for each other and above all did all of this with grace and smiles (maybe you could only see their eyes smiling). To our Thrive Hilton team who had to embrace the change of ownership in the midst of still reeling from the stress of serving the first COVID-19 patient in SA, to our ever expanding Ballito team who have had to adapt and change so many times this year, to our steadfast steering team of the “mothership” in Kloof. From the bottom of my heart, I salute each and everyone of the team for giving plenty this year! You are the reason to THRIVE.

As we sit on the verge of 2021 and everyone is grateful to see the end of 2020, COVID-19 will still be among us for a while and as we watch the world begin vaccinations, I urge you all to embrace the lessons we have learnt this year and that is that we are stronger when we work together. That kindness and tolerance is what will make us THRIVE and while we can supply you with the supplements that you need, the human connection is so important and we look forward to seeing Thrive continue to THRIVE. Thank you to each and everyone of you for your support, your consideration and your continual raving reviews of the wonderful community that makes us Thrive.

BY: Lynda Bryant – Pharmacist & owner of Thrive | Better than well