Georgie’s Angels, a non-profit organisation in Lotus River, has been feeding the community since 2014.
When they registered as an NPO in April, they decided to expand and now they are looking for more volunteers to join them.
With five board members and five volunteers, Georgie’s Angels partners with businesses which contribute items for the soup and bread they provide to at least 15 informal settlements.
George March, former councillor of wards 66, 67 and Ward 88, saw the need in the Phumlani, Egoli, Jim se Bos and other informal settle-
ments, when he was serving on the council.
He met Lynne Anthony on one of those sites, and she asked him if they could team up.
Mr March said: “We saw the people’s living conditions but with the help of two farmers in Philippi we managed to get vegetables to make soup.”
Last year, Georgie’s Angels, named after Mr March, who is the only male in the organisation, starting helping primary schools which the children from the informal settlements attend, including Hyde Park, in Fairways; Montague’s Gift, in Lotus River; Parkwood, Zeekoevlei and Prince George, in Lavender Hill, and Die Duine, in Lotus River.
Ms Anthony said they liaised with the principals to find out what the children needed for school. “We have raised R28 000 to make up stationery packs for 2 000 children. We got a discount at a stationery store, and we handed them out to the schools.”
Georgie’s Angels also found out that the schools’ government feeding schemes did not provide enough to cover the whole school.
“We have organised with a supermarket to send us a soup mobile, where we feed 1 000 children at school, every Wednesday.”
On Saturdays, Georgie’s Angels use their own budget to make soup for the community.
Ms Anthony said they are also in the process of setting up skills training. “We went to Die Duine to find out how many children are interested in needlework. About 150 children showed interest but we are going to start needlework classes for 30 children only, on a Saturday.”
The next step is to organise a teacher to volunteer for woodwork classes.
Mr March said although he is the only man on board, he would like to invite other retired men to join them. “Maybe they can plough back into the community by teaching the children a skill.”
Ms Anthony said they have also reached out to the Fisher Centre, in Grassy Park, a home for the mentally and intellectually challenged when they heard the centre may be closing if they don’t get enough funding to maintain it (“Residents, staff, fear Fisher Centre may shut doors”, Southern Mail, September 28).
Ms Anthony said: “I have phoned 12 organisations to request for help with maintenance or money.”
Mr March said they are planning to move into areas such as Ottery and Parkwood, where there are rental housing units, to feed the community.
Anyone who is interested to join or who would like to make a donation of any kind, can contact Ms Anthony on 082 871 4828.