Fighting hunger and keeping the cold out is a reality for many communities in KwaZulu-Natal following the floods. Homelessness and lack of access to food is the reason for NCT Forestry partnering with Community Chest Durban for the third time this year.
They donated R150 000 worth of food parcels and blankets to five of Community Chest’s NPO Impact Partners who selected members of their community who were in the greatest need, to distribute the donations.
Based in Waterloo near Veralum, Izethembiso Soup Kitchen provides food parcels and cooked meals to 100 children and disabled adults. They were one of the beneficiaries to receive R30 000 worth of essential food items and blankets for distribution to the vulnerable.
Mshukangubo Association for the Aged cares for 333 elderly people in Maphumulo, near Stanger. This community-based organisation looks after the aged including those who are bed-ridden by providing home-based care and bed baths. They are very grateful to Community Chest and NCT Forestry for the support at a time when the people they serve are in desperate need.
Mshukangubo monitors medication and provides a daily hot meal as well as an exercise class for those who can walk to their Centre. They manage their patients’ pension complaints and provide basic adult education, intergenerational programmes, sports and recreational programmes.
They have three income-generating projects – a vegetable garden, sewing and selling of clothes and breeding and selling of poultry.
The third recipient, Phoenix Child Welfare Society, has an incredible 20 100 children and their families in their care.
Their youth empowerment programme focuses on life skills, HIV/Aids support, career guidance, economic empowerment, and counselling services while The Sahara Crisis Centre acts as a halfway house for women and children who are victims of violence. Staff at the Centre work with these individuals to empower them with the aim of preventing further family violence. The NPO Impact Partner engages in public education targeting victims, families and perpetrators of abuse and violence to ensure effective rehabilitation.
Their overall goal is to develop resources in the community for the enhancement and well-being of children and their families. They work with foster families and adoptive parents, protect children and reconstruct families. Creating job opportunities also falls within their portfolio.
Tongaat Child Welfare Society was also a recipient, and they do an amazing job of providing counselling for: Children who are abused or neglected, foster parents, those wanting to adopt, marital discord and family conflict, custody investigations as well applications for birth and death registration.
They offer HIV/AIDS guidance, counselling and care as well as support to pregnant teenagers, grief and trauma counselling, and help to those who are suicidal.
Their Homework Centres are vital for empowering and enhancing children in the Tongaat area. These Centres provide opportunities for educational stimulation, and to develop children physically, emotionally and socially. They monitor and supervise the homework of children in the absence of their parents or caregivers who may have literacy problems. They encourage reading skills from an early age and teach disadvantaged children computer skills for a brighter future.
Finally, they have an amazing ‘Children’s Fund School Breakfast’ programme that ensures children are able to concentrate at school. Research shows a consistent connection between hunger reduction and improved learning. They are currently providing breakfast to children at 14 schools in the area.
The last recipient, Vulamehlo Health Resource Centre, offers care and support for orphans and vulnerable children in the Ilembe District of KwaDukuza. They are also a hospice for those suffering from HIV/Aids and who need to be admitted. HIV/Aids counselling, bereavement counselling, health education and nutritional support are also part of this NPO Impact Partner’s mandate.
All five NPO Impact Partners work tirelessly to support the vulnerable in their community. When an unexpected tragedy happens, like the KZN Floods, it is difficult to provide emergency support without the help of generous corporate donors such as NCT Forestry.