One of the key ways that Ashraful Aid helps to provide food security is through our food distribution programs. These programs provide individuals and families with the food they need to meet their daily nutritional needs. This can include everything from staple foods like rice and beans to fresh fruits and vegetables and hot meals.
Beneficiaries of our food relief programme include families in need, university students, schools, madressahs, hospitals, old age homes and other community organisations..
During the past year, over 25,000 food hampers have been distributed across all 9 provinces in South Africa, reaching rural communities as far as Northern KZN, Mpumalanga and Northern Cape. Food hampers have also been distributed in Somaliland, Burundi, Uganda, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Palestine, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
We established a dedicated kitchen in 2022 in Marlboro, Johannesburg, which has the capacity to prepare up to 3,000 meals a day. As the selected partner to provide meals for the Wits University student aid meal programme, the kitchen prepared over 100,000 meals for the Wits students i the past year. We also established a Madressah feeding programme and a halal meal programme for Johannesburg-based hospitals with weekly meals prepared from the Ashraful Aid kitchen and by volunteers and partner organisations, as well as the provision of bread, grocery hampers, soup and other items to support Madressah and community feeding programmes in areas of Western Cape, KZN and Gatueng.
Our iftar feeeding programme in 2022 provided over X,000 meals last year in South Africa, and various other countries in Africa, Middle East and Asia. A further X,000 packs of dates and water were distributed to masjids in South Africa. This year we hope to distribute over 40,000 packs of dates and water, as well as provide another 80,000 iftar meals.
During 2023, we expect our food relief programme to expand further as the long-term effects of declining economic conditions, droughts, natural disasters and conflict continue to take their toll on the most vulnerable .This includes the provision of more food hamper support across South Africa and internationally, as well as expanding our Madressah and orphan feeding programmes.
One of our key areas of focus for the coming year will be to look at ways to develop a sustainable, self-sufficient and affordable community food initiative to support madressahs, schools and other community based food initiatives. This will include piloting agricultural food programmes and community based charity stores in the most vulnerable communities to provide cost-effective food supply to those who need it most.