Today, on World Food Day, we are celebrating the numbers…
🍲 The number of meals served since 6 April…
🥕 The tonnes of produce received…
🚮 The volume of 'food waste' rescued from the market so that it didn't end up in landfill…
🐷 The small amount that filled the tummies of pigs, instead of humans…
🥚 The donations received from generous food manufacturing companies…
😇 The number of people it takes to rescue, cook and feed – volunteers, chefs, waste warriors, food heroes, restaurateurs, cooks, community caterers, drivers…
These are the numbers for six months, from 6 April to 13 September. On this day of awareness around food, we thank, salute and honour the many people who have made these numbers possible. There are so, so many and to name each one would be impossible. Each one is invaluable in this journey of rescuing food to give it to compassionate chefs who cook and feed the most vulnerable in our society.
A special word of thanks to a few people whose contribution to Chefs with Compassion has been nothing short of remarkable:
To the market agents at the Joburg Fresh Product Market, who make it all possible.
To our generous sponsors and donors – Unilever Food Solutions SA, McCain, Nestlé, Griffith Crown Foods, Crowne National, RCL Foods, Shoprite Checkers, Freshmark, Kirsty Watts Foundation, Bryanston Can, Tsogo Sun, Sandton Sun, Sandton Convention Centre, Garden Court Sandton City, The Palazzo, Holiday Inn Sandton, 54 on Bath, African Pride Melrose Arch Autograph Collection, Protea Hotel by Marriott O.R. Tambo, Bidfood SA, Food Trucks, The Fishermans Deli, HSC, Imperial, LSC, Abi Clark, Rapid Blue Productions, Meals on Wheels, KFC South Africa, Paulis Sauces, Turn 'n Slice and Open Food.
To our gas sponsor, Oryx Energies SA.
To the culinary school that was our home for our first six months, HTA School of Culinary Art.
To our food rescue partner, Nosh Food Rescue NPC under Hanneke Van Linge and Ilet Jonker, the waste warriors who save tons and tons of fresh produce from ending up in the incinerator.
To The South African Chefs Association, for being our biggest supporter and backer.
To Slow Food International and Slow Food Chefs Alliance South Africa for giving us Arnold Tanzer and Caroline McCann – the visionaries, pioneers, leaders, advocates of good, clean, fair food for all.
To our PR partner, Vanessa Naude and Strategic Public Relations.
To our volunteers, Austine Nxumalo, Calson Madlala and our new recruits who spend their days in the sharehouse receiving, cleaning and dispatching, and those who were there in the beginning, Adarsh Maharaj and Avin Hiralal.
To our hubs – too numerous to mention or do justice to, but including Mahlamola, Steven Maresch, Nyana's Hair, Chef Sammy Mashile, Citrum Chef Khumalo, Tebogo and the Disoufeng Pub, Nishaan and the Infinity Foundation Charity, Xolisa, Thandi, Carol, Jeanette, Busi, Elaine, Korah, Noni, Emalena, Ladies on Wheels, Word of Faith, Perron, Army of Yahweh, Amalia, Tumi, Lynelle, Kensington CAN, and more. These are the people who collect from our sharehouse every week and do the hard work of cooking nutritious, appetizing meals for their communities and our beneficiary organisations.
To our team in Tshwane, headed by Jb Bekker; in Durban under Jodi Gillespie; the inimitable Robert Knuckey in Cape Town; Tom Hurter in Limpopo.
To someone who was involved from the very beginning, helped to establish the foundations and has been the backbone of the systems from the start, Adrian Vigus-Brown.
To Stuart McClarty for the contacts, network, support and generally making things happen.
And last, but not least, to the people who bring it all together every single day. These individuals are all volunteers who give passionately, tirelessly and selflessly to keep the dream alive – Coovashan Pillay, Sakura Butler, Marion Tanzer, Dasen Sarugaser and Yejna Maharaj. You are our heroes.
To make a donation to Chefs with Compassion, and in so doing contribute to us being able to continue doing what we've done since the start of lockdown, please go to www.chefswithcompassion.org.za/donate-now.