Abraham Kriel Potchefstroom helps alleviate hunger with groundbreaking ‘1 tin = 1 mask’ initiative

What started out as a spur-of-the-moment gesture has quickly turned into a bustling exchange programme and within a matter of days, more than 2 000 tins of food have been collected and a whopping 2500 masks handed out.

The campaign was launched a fortnight ago and the requests for masks has since rocketed.

The concept is simple. One tin of food equals one mask and with everyone scrambling for face masks as the number of Coronavirus cases in South Africa continues to grow, the children’s home identified a way of helping and haven’t looked back.

All tins collected are distributed to those who need it most in the Potchefstroom area. To make this happen, the children’s home have joined hands with the Potch-Tlokwe Chamber of Commerce who are firmly behind the local JB Marks Municipality’s Disaster Relief project.  

The seed was planted when health minister Dr Zweli Mkhize recommended that everyone should wear a face mask when in public to help prevent the spread of the virus. Childcare workers came together and with the assistance of many eager kids, they made hundreds of masks for staff members and young residents alike.

All it took was a Facebook post and hours later there was a flood of queries from members of the public asking if they could buy masks. The management put their heads together and came up with the idea of not selling masks, but rather exchanging them for tins which could be donated to people in need – a scheme which has been deemed brilliant by many.

The campaign was launched a fortnight ago and the requests for masks has since rocketed.

The beauty of this project is that it not only provides a way to flatten the curve through the distribution of masks, but also helps feed those in all parts of the community where a need is present.

– Principal Christie Saayman

“The response has been overwhelming,” he added.

Staff members have been hard at work as the demand for masks continues to grow.

Members of the public have been flocking to the gates at the children’s home where tins and masks are exchanged throughout the day.

With the tallies still climbing each day, there is no end in sight for this project which is bound to touch thousands of lives.

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