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Giving back to the community

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Thulari Foundation is an organisation that prioritises young people and empowers children and youth from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The foundation launched its first feeding scheme in Kwa-Thema Ext 3, Marikana Section on June 22. The feeding scheme is established for children between the ages of one to 18 residing in the area and aims to provide meals to over 100 children.

The feeding programme aims to provide peace of mind to parents who cannot afford to provide their children with nutritious meals while at home. This is established to improve overall food security in the community.

Johannes Mabena (42), the organisation’s founder, said they are prepared to make a difference in children’s lives, especially in the informal settlement of Marikana.

Philisiwe Chitha, Johannes Mabena and Sonto Maseko dishing up for the children.

“Children are forced to face harsh reality in their critical early years. The HIV/Aids epidemic has devastated a lot of families and communities, leaving children orphaned, vulnerable and without a breadwinner to provide for their basic needs.

“They are left traumatised and alone to head their households. Many go to bed without eating. That is why we as Thulari Foundation have decided to step in by providing a meal to the kids in need,” said Mabena.

Nokulunga Nhlanhla cited that they have established a working relationship with two community members who will cook and provide meals to the children on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

Nhlanhla further cited that they will also provide meals on school days because many learners leave very early for school without having eaten breakfast.

Nokulunga Nhlanhla, Philisiwe Chitha, Johannes Mabena and Sonto Maseko working as a team while dishing up for the children.

“The ladies we are working with will ensure that no child goes to school without eating.

“Knowing that there are children who go to school weak and hungry and as a result fail to pay attention in class is an issue that we are planning to phase out.

“With partnerships with the community and business stakeholders, we will soon have enough to feed the community of Marikana at large because many who reside in the area are unemployed and struggling to make ends meet,” said Nhlanhla.

Community members Philisiwe Chitha and Sonto Maseko are the ones who will be assisting the organisation in providing meals to the community.

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Chitha said she was thrilled when she was asked by the organisation to join hands. She further added that she has always wanted to make a difference in her community but never knew how.

“I am thrilled to have such an initiative on my doorstep. I love working with people and appreciate the partnership with Thulari Foundation.

“This area faces a lot of challenges, as most people are uneducated and that makes it hard for them to find employment.

“The meals we will be providing through Thulari will make a huge difference,” added Chitha.

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