A cup of pap goes a long way for community members

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Rugby World Cup champions John Smit and Trevor Nyakane are proud of how quickly the initiative has grown. Photo: Chante' Ho Hip

FOURWAYS – What initially began as an idea of distributing one cup of maize meal has grown into a fully-fledged operation that feeds hundreds of vulnerable people in various communities on a weekly basis.

There were smiles all around as the One Cup of Pap initiative spent an afternoon feeding just over 500 vulnerable people from Clay Oven informal settlement at Clay Oven

What initially began as an idea of distributing one cup of maize meal by former Sharks and Stormers rugby player, Wayne Boardman, has grown into a fully-fledged operation that feeds hundreds of vulnerable people in various communities on a weekly basis.

Catherine and Christine Phillips are joined by Steve Green. Photo: Chante’ Ho Hip

From a starting budget of R250, the initiative has grown exponentially averaging at almost R80 000 a week. In order to widen its reach and get more people involved, Boardman called on some of his rugby friends to join in and hopefully get more people involved.

“This operation now feeds between 1 500 to 2 100 people so we hope that by bringing on a few familiar faces, people may want to get involved,” said Boardman.

He credits the involvement of Sandton Police Station for allowing and assisting the group to feed a large number of people. “The Sandton police officers have been phenomenal! I can sometimes talk to them the day before or even the day of the food distribution, just like today, and they will be here being polite and helping out with the crowds.”

The group created stations which would allow individuals to fill up their plastic bags with an array of food items. Photo: Chante’ Ho Hip

He noted that he has noticed a trend in the community during this time whereby everyone would like to give back but they just don’t know where to give and who to trust. The group now provides weekly updates to show the community just how powerful their donations are.

“I started out by asking the people in my community for donations and now we have donations coming in from people that I haven’t even met or heard about before, it is truly amazing to see the power of humanity.”

To date, drops have been made at a number of areas including Ivory Park, Braamfontein Spruit and Parkmore.

Springbok legends and former Rugby World Cup winners Joel Stransky, Trevor Nyakane and John Smit have also joined the initiative on a weekly basis to not only bring attention to the cause but actually get involve and help distribute the food parcels among the community.

Nyakane added that his involvement with One Cup of Pap was a ‘no brainer’. “I was really just sitting at home and training but now I have the opportunity to lend a hand and help those who really need it. During this particular time there are people out there that really do need our help,” he said.

Details: Wayne Boardman 084 545 1717.

Mike Momo, Sibongile Nwobobo, Flora Thobakgale and Moria Sefolo led a helping hand to the feeding scheme. Photo: Chante’ Ho Hip

By: Chante’ Ho Hip