By Al-Qalam Reporter
An outreach programme to feed thousands across the country during Ashura has grown from 50 000 meals in 2020 to over 264 000 meals this year, thanks to the generosity of the community.
When an appeal went out for Muslims to extend their generosity to not just to family and friends but to Musjids, communities, welfare and charity organisations across South Africa, the response was overwhelming. The Ashura Muharram Feeding Programme eventually fed over 264 184 people across South Africa.
Ml. Vanker spokesperson for the project said: “In 2021, Muslims for Humanity coordinated a nationwide feeding programme with the help of NGO’s, Musjids, welfare and charity organisations across South Africa and set out to feed 100 000 people in one day. The overwhelming support from all facets of the community saw a total of just over 175 000 people being provided with a warm meal,” he said.
This year, the project exceeded their target of 250 000 meals.
A week preceding the 28 July, MFH began co-coordinating the fund raising for the project in readiness for the cooking which began the day before. The average pot of food costs R2 500 and each pot feeds 120 people.
According to Ml. Vanker, food was prepared and cooked at multiple sites. Distribution had been pre-arranged between all the organisations taking part. The main distribution areas were at informal settlements. Well planned logistics ensured that there was no overlap and that a maximum number of people in need were reached.
As in previous years, the coordination, logistics and support provided by MFH formed the backbone for the network, allowing it to spread out and ensure that there is efficient and accurate distribution to key areas and communities, he said.
Organisations that took part this year included Radio 786, Radio Al-Ansaar, Caring Sisters Network (CSN), Al Fidaa Foundation, SANZAF, Estcourt Islamic Centre, WeFeedSA, Food Aid Foundation, Caring Women’s Forum Pretoria (CWF), Natal Memon Jamaat (NMJ), Tiny Steps, IMAN NPC, Community Relief Foundation, Garden Social Services, Phoenix Advice and Dawah Centre, Selfless Souls, Naklistan, Verulam Young Muslim Society, Humanitarian Development Alliance SA (HUDA SA), Chatsworth Islamic Forum, Musjid Soofia, Musjid Soofie Subhani, Newlands East Musjid & Madressa, Ladysmith Dawah Centre and SADICS Welfare to name a few.