In 2013 Siggi van Niekerk the administrator of the TTN clinics approached the ‘Missions’ team and reported an urgent need regarding extremely poor families trying to survive with little or no food. A meeting was held and we decided to start a project called ‘Operation Hunger’. We identified 9 families in our region from the clinic reports in conjunction with Social Services.
HOW TO HELP: We decided to put together a well thought out ‘supplementary’ food parcel that would meet this need. Siggi chose the various items and went as far as identifying the need for two candles a week, to assist the children with homework in the evening.
It was immediately evident due to experience in this regard, that the parcels must be broken down into a weekly pack to be most effective. Larger quantities of products are repacked in smaller quantities to reduce the temptation to sell the products. This ensures that the food gets to the little ones, where the greatest need is.
DISTRIBUTION CANDIDATES: We compiled a master list of families, and decided that the distribution point would be the Moolman Church (every Sunday after the service). This fulfilled the “spiritual” component of this support, as it was in response to the words of the prophet Malachi “Bring the tithes into my store-house, that there may be food in my Temple”.
Since 2013, the number of families being supported has risen from 9 to 35. We receive support from our German sponsors, as well as local farmers and Christians. The exciting news is that CCN (via the Augsburg Lutheran Church Mission Committee) have decided to distribute food parcels on a similar basis from the CCF church in Commondale on Sundays.
We hope that we will be able to replicate this model of support in all our mission areas, as it deals with the immediate problem, while we work on the issues of gardening and food security through the various projects such as Galilee Farming Methods, Skills Development, Entrepreneurship training and Carpentry, Bee Keeping, etc.