In the words of President Cyril Ramaphosa in the State of the Nation Address this week, “Millions of South Africans are unable to provide for themselves and their families.” While load shedding and inflation are top priorities, food security and hunger remain a major ongoing crisis, with an estimated 20 million people going to bed hungry every night in South Africa.
Organisations such as Chefs with Compassion play a vital role in the fight against hunger, and yet they fight a daily battle to fund their efforts. In the case of Chefs with Compassion, these efforts are aimed not just at hunger relief in the most vulnerable communities across Johannesburg, but also at rescuing nutritious, edible food that would otherwise go to waste.
Chefs with Compassion has delivered close to five million meals to food vulnerable communities since May 2020. Working with an expansive network of around 30 organisations supported by Chefs with Compassion, consisting mostly of volunteers, this amazing work has only been possible thanks to corporate donations and by rescuing food.
With the rising cost of living, including rentals, fuel, volunteer stipends and of course food supplies, it is saddening for the Chairman of Chefs with Compassion, James Khoza, to declare that the organisation can no longer sustain its operating costs. “With the help of our funding partners from the private sector and civil society who have supported our mission from the start, we have been able to remain in operation throughout the pandemic. However, our resources are running dry and additional sponsors are needed for Chefs with Compassion to continue this essential work moving forward.”
Chefs with Compassion captured the hearts and minds of South Africans with its annual #67000litres for Mandela Day campaign, which champions the spirit of collective action. For the last three years, hundreds of chefs, culinary schools, home cooks and community caterers have spent 67 minutes cooking for hungry South Africans all over the country on Mandela Day, resulting in over 950 000 cups of soup being served collectively. The #67000litres campaign is Chefs with Compassion’s biggest fundraising drive of the year and contributes towards its ability to continue feeding hungry people daily.
To ensure that Chefs with Compassion and its network can continue feeding those most in need and keep fighting the hunger crisis in South Africa, the organisation is appealing to corporate organisations, the private sector and civil society to assist through a monthly donation.
“If we are able to secure 10 monthly donors of R10 000 or 20 donors of R5 000, we will be able to continue rescuing food, and cooking and feeding those in desperate need. Only through this additional funding can we ensure that the organisations who are reliant on us continue receiving the support they need and continue the fight against hunger,” says Khoza.
Donations are tax deductible and qualify for a Section 18A certificate. No amount is too small to make a difference.
Members of the public who would like to support Chefs with Compassion, either through a once-off or recurring monthly donation, can do so via their website on https://cwc.org.za/donate or via EFT to Chefs with Compassion, FNB account number ¬62852995269¬. For more information on how to get involved or support Chefs with Compassion email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We received large donations of vegetables and utensils from Chefs with Compassion which are helping us maintain our homeless soup kitchen that feeds over 200 people daily and vulnerable children in informal settlements in Berea.
After my restaurant business shut down at the start of lockdown, I saw people struggling. They couldn’t get food to eat. I chose to make a difference and I started a soup kitchen to feed people, with help from my staff and family – and Chefs with Compassion.
I used to have a catering business before Covid. Now I am involved with Chefs with Compassion in serving my community by cooking food and also sharing it with other organisations for their communities. I feed 1,500 people each week.
We would like to thank the CWC team as they continuously provide rescued produce that has helped us feed hundreds of thousands of hungry people since the start of the lockdowns.
Hope of the Hopeless Centre would not be open if it was not for CWC, which came and rescued us in the pandemic.
CWC gives Army of Yahweh the opportunity to help other soup kitchens for children and old age homes and vulnerable people in informal settlements in different areas.