At FoodForward SA, while addressing hunger is our priority, we do this in a very strategic manner – by using good quality, edible surplus food as catalyst for social development in under-served communities. Through the partnership with our network of beneficiary organisation offering various skills development programmes, education programmes and employment advancement opportunities, we are able to provide nutritious meals to nearly 140,000 children and youth.
One example of how we strategically support and strengthen vulnerable communities is an organisation called 9Miles Project, located in Strandfontein, Western Cape. They joined our network in 2016. They implement a programme that currently serves 700 meals per day (breakfast and dinner) to 350 vulnerable children from the surrounding communities. Having access to a variety of food groceries significantly reduces their grocery bill, and also provides nutritious meals and snacks for all the children and youth who are participating in various programmes. We recently chatted to the team at 9Miles Project and they took us through some of the services they offer. Founded in Cape Town in 2013 by Nigel and Sher’Neil Savel, they discovered that the kids in their community had no positive activities to engage them, and are not water savvy. 9Miles Project offers daily operational activities such as surf therapy, fitness and Water Safety Training – building mentally, and physically strong youth to keep them off the streets. In addition, they provide community feeding and family support, environmental education, literacy and academic support, digital literacy and media programmes to upskilling youth and those who are unemployed. This enables them to provide employment opportunities via their sustainable social enterprises such as Surf Repair Shop and the 9Miles Café.
“We found FoodForward SA particularly responsive during the Covid-19 lockdown when it really ramped up its efforts to address growing food insecurity. The staff are always very helpful and are clearly passionate about what they do. We are so grateful to FoodForward SA for the ongoing support and partnership which allows us to stem the tide of food insecurity in vulnerable communities.” Says Sher’Neil Savel, 9Miles Project’s Co-founder. To the 9Miles Project team, thank you for investing in our youth to ensure their lives are transformed for a brighter future.