Feeding poor from own pocket

Ntombentsha Msutu
THE Phila Nathi Community Development soup kitchen in NU8 has been helping the poor in the community ever since it was founded 13 years ago.
It was started by good Samaritan Portia Mhlobisi after she noticed the area was one of the poorest in the community.
“When I first started, I had nothing much, even the money to buy food came from my own pocket, but I fed more than a hundred people one day a week.
“From there it went to three days a week, but still it was not enough,” said Mhlobisi.
Phila Nathi now feeds more than 600 people both young and old, from Monday to Wednesday.
Most of them have no source of income, they rely on the soup for food. One of the pupils who depends on this soup kitchen project to be able to eat, Sibongile Mpofu of NU8, said: “It is really amazing seeing that there are people who care about others out there.
“This soup kitchen really helps me, because I have no source of income. I depend on this to have something in my stomach.”
They have now planted a few gardens near the container were they cook their soup. These gardens will help them, as they sometimes struggle to get sponsors.
“Finding sponsors for food is always a struggle, but that does not stop me from helping people, that is why these veggies from the garden will help the people with the necessary nutrients needed.
“We also weigh them after every two weeks. We want to check if we are feeding them proper food, and to see if we really are making a difference,” said Mhlobisi.
They want to encourage people to get involved in this initiatives.
“It would be great if more people could lend a helping hand. The number of people we feed is growing every day and sometimes we do not have enough food and are forced to close earlier than we usually do,” said Mhlobiso. Anyone interested in helping can contact Mhlobiso on 082-928-7154.

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