Date published: Posted on 22 August 2017
710 food boxes containing a variety of essentials were handed over to families in need in Lawley, south of Ennerdale, on 22 August. The boxes were packed in 67 minutes by KFC staff and partners as a Mandela Day activity in support of Add Hope, KFC’s feeding initiative which combines customer donations with KFC CSI contributions to feed over 120 000 children through 137 beneficiary organisations.
Add Hope beneficiary JAM facilitated the handover to the community through NGO Ekukhanyeni Relief Project – an organisation that reaches over 1000 preschoolers in the Lawley community at 15 creches. The crèche principals identified families of the learners at these creches who are in need, as well as other community members in need, to receive the boxes. JAM provides nutrient-rich meals to many of the creches Ekukhanyeni supports in Lawley – enabling the children to grow and thrive.
“As a result of the severe poverty and the high prevalence of HIV/AIDS in this area, the ability of parents to provide for their children’s well-being and development have lessened and families have become fragmented,” says Debbie Benson-Archer of Ekukhanyeni. “Many children are being looked after by grandmothers and are dependant on social grants. There are countless vulnerable children, many orphaned, destitute or heads of households, without any form of early childhood care or opportunities for formal education. In most cases, these vulnerable children are malnourished. We can already see a notable difference in the children who attend the creches we work with and who are receiving meals. These additional food boxes will go a long way to help the families in this area.”
The team from Ekukhanyeni are passionate about changing the lives of children in Lawley through teaching the teachers at 15 creches and helping them take care of the children’s needs, including good nutrition. There are currently no other early childhood care and education programmes at these crèches, which is very common to informal settlement environments. #AddHope beneficiary JAM provides a nutritious meal, the centres grow food gardens, the teachers have been trained in ECD and receive their worksheets from Debbie every week.
David Brown, CEO of JAM, said, “Our long term partnership with Add Hope has a tremendous impact on the work we do in communities such as Lawley. When you think that one in five children in South Africa suffer from stunting and learning difficulties due to malnutrition, which translates to over 1.6 million children, there is a lot more work to be done to reach children in need. Every bit helps.”
“It’s great to see the donations and the boxes we packed on Mandela Day extending the impact we already have in these communities through Add Hope,” says Thabisa Mkhwanazi, KFC Public Affairs Director for Africa. “Add Hope is so relevant in South Africa where so many suffer in impoverished conditions. Children suffer the most, as malnutrition in their formative years means they miss the window of opportunity they have to reach their full development potential. We’re proud to be able to unite with our customers behind a very relevant cause, as we work to contribute to society and tackle the world’s number one health risk – hunger. Every time you Add Hope, you help us to help children learn, grow and thrive.”