Community Empowerment

Youth Happy to Contribute Their Labour at The City’s Foodbank Benny Foodbank

Benny FoodbankOver 20 young people are temporarily employed to work at the City’s foodbank. For them, it is more than just a daily job, it’s their contribution to a greater good for the benefit of their fellow citizens during this uncertain time of Covid-19.

Since its establishment by Executive Mayor Cllr Mzwandile Masina on 14 April, the City’s foodbank has received food parcels to the value of over R7 million, with 22 292 food parcels distributed, 111 460 residents reached and 105 donors who donated consumable and non-consumable goods.

Benny Madihlaba (32) from Tsakane is one of the young people employed at the foodbank through the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).

Benny’s day at work starts at 08h00; when he arrives at the foodbank he convenes a short meeting with his team of seven to discuss the day’s activities. On a daily basis, work at the foodbank involves receiving and sorting food items donated by various donors into different categories such as starch, vegetables, perishable and non-perishable items, and packaging them before loading them into delivery trucks ready for door-to-door deliveries.

“I am an unemployed qualified artisan. If it were not for the temporary job opportunity I got through the EPWP programme, I would also be on the list to receive the food parcels. It is for this reason I give my all when I do this job, because I know the difference it makes in many people’s lives. I pack each parcel with love and humility. This is my contribution to help fight hunger and distress during this uncertain time of COVID-19,” said Madihlaba.

May Masina says the City’s foodbank aims to distribute food parcels to every household in all 119 informal settlements in the City during the COVID-19 lockdown period. To date, residents in seven informal settlements have already received food parcels.