Former Local Heroes finalists support the hungry and desperate
Joining forces with NPO Helping Those in Need, the Daily Dispatch is calling on readers and the public to donate non-perishable foods to support the community and past Local Heroes finalists during the Covid-19 pandemic.
As a previous Local Heroes finalist, Helping Those in Need has continued its work in the community by feeding more than 300 homeless people on East London’s streets during the lockdown.
The NPO, run by Matthew and Marion Peake, has also helped to feed 1,800 children who usually rely on school feeding schemes and has donated food parcels to 4,700 homes around the city.
“We’ve been helping those in need for over four years as an organisation, and when lockdown came we received messages from distressed moms asking if we could assist with food parcels, as feeding schemes were closed due to schools closing,” Marion said.
“We also saw the need on the streets as there was and is no well-constructed shelter for the homeless.”
The couple took to Facebook to ask for community assistance, and have since received food donations from the public and from bigger sponsors including Spar, Woolworths, Ideal Butchery, Food Lovers Market and Star Bread.
Sending two teams out daily, one starting in West Bank and the other in Gonubie, the organisation’s volunteers, wearing masks and gloves, make their way through the city, giving soup, bread and blankets to those on the streets.
It’s extremely scary, but we have faith and trust God and our protective gear to cover us. Matthew and a team of men have been serving on the streets as I have cancer and cannot be exposed [to the virus]
“It’s extremely scary, but we have faith and trust God and our protective gear to cover us. Matthew and a team of men have been serving on the streets as I have cancer and cannot be exposed [to the virus].
“My ladies team has been preparing parcels at home and the community has been phenomenal in supporting us with hundreds of sarmies, soup, boiled eggs and apples,” said Marion, whose team have prepared 30 food parcels for families daily since the lockdown began in March.
“Our biggest challenge is that there is no funding nor support from government, BCM or social development.”
Hoping the former 2017 Local Heroes finalists would continue to receive support from the community, Daily Dispatch marketing manager Jennilee Peremore-Oliver said the paper would advertise the Helping Those in Need initiative for as long as needed during the pandemic.
“When I found out about the wonderful work Marion and Matthew Peake are doing during Covid-19, we decided to use our powerful advertising platform to inform more people about their work so they can receive even more donations,” Peremore-Oliver said.
“It motivates us when we see our Local Heroes, years after becoming finalists, still continuing with their good work.”
Marion said since being part of the Local Heroes campaign three years ago, Helping Those in Need had worked closely with fellow Local Heroes and would continue to do so.
She said the organisation was forever grateful to all donors, businesses and teams involved in making their work possible.
Donations of non-perishable food can be dropped off at 6 Jarvis Road, Berea. For more information call Marion on 072-348-4528.
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