The community of Heideveld have been hosting a mass iftar everyday during the month of Ramdan to cater for Muslim families in the area who do not have any food to break their fast. A recently established organisation, Heideveld Community Care sets up tables and a kitchen in a open field to accommodate the hungry bellies of Muslim and non-Muslim families in the area.
According to the organisation’s public relations officer, Vanessa Adriaanse, the mass iftar was a project started by the executive members, with funding coming from their very own pockets at the beginning. Adriaanse, a resident of Heideveld, said since the first day of Ramadan, more people in the community and outside the area have offered support whether in funding or kind, to assist in the preparations and distributions for the mass iftaar.
The Heideveld Community Care is a non-profit organisation in Heideveld that is finding new ways to restore positivity to the poverty stricken community.
The ills from the manifestation of socio-economic issues within the community has seen the people of Heideveld live under challenging conditions in recent years. The community on the cape flats houses a large amount of the unemployed and individuals from different ages finding solace in drug and alcohol abuse.
“We need to get our community back and focus on the positive. There is no exact estimate of people we are able to feed every night but we do all that we can to ensure that they receive their bowl of soup and main course meal,” Adriaanse said.
The children are also provided with a meal in the morning for suhoor. Adriaanse said that as the community is close and everyone is aware of the domestic issues of their neighbours, this sparked the concern from Muslim and non-Muslim residents.
“We are planning to adopt a Muslim child for Eid. This means that we will then buy their clothes and shoes for Eid. We are appealing to the broader communities to come and visit Heideveld and assist in this initiative,” Adriaanse further explained.
Meanwhile, Eid preparations are struggling to get under way. Adriaanse said the organisation has completely put their trust in God as they have not yet received major sponsors and continue working out of the pockets of community members.
“This initiative will not only be one for this particular month but we are hoping to see it continue throughout the year. We want to take back Heideveld. For the first time in a while we have seen the community come together and help each other in an hour of need. We want to restore the sense of family in amongst neighbours in this community,” Adriaanse said.
“We further call out to any organisations who can maybe help us keep this project alive. We are more than willing to assist any other organisation who could use our help.”
They are planning to feed about 1000 people on Eid day.
“I want to thank everyone who put their heart and time into this project. We have been able to achieve the impossible, thanks to a little faith and the grace of God.” Adriaanse can be contacted on 078 311 8892. VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)