Celebrating Mandela’s legacy, one nutritious meal at a time, with Oceana and Stop Hunger Now

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In commemoration of South Africa’s greatest statesman and the international day in his honour, Oceana Group, is directing considerable efforts to bolstering food security and eradicating hunger on a national scale.

“The overarching objective of Mandela Day is to inspire all of us to help change the world for the better, empowering disadvantaged communities as we build a global movement for doing good,” says Oceana CEO Francois Kuttel.

Food insecurity remains a major problem in Southern Africa, with more than 3.1 million children facing debilitating hunger on a daily basis. To mark Mandela Day this year, Oceana has collaborated with STOP HUNGER NOW SA and called on their employees to each dedicate 67 minutes of their day packing nutritious meals, which will be distributed to early childhood development centres in Hout Bay.

“I am overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of the employees who were eager to participate in the meal packing sessions we held on Monday, 10 July. I am thrilled that we exceeded our target of 20 000 packed meals by the end of the day, breaking our previous record of 19 000 packed meals in 2014,” says Kuttel. “In total, our staff have packed more than 200 000 meals in the last six years that we have partnered with Stop Hunger Now.”

Food security is one of Oceana’s CSI core focus areas and it is a privilege for the company to collaborate with Stop Hunger Now, particularly because they are a volunteer based programme that is at the forefront of tackling food security on a global scale, with meal packing locations in the USA, India, Italy, Malaysia, Philippines, Peru, and of course, here in South Africa. The food parcels comprise of rice, soy, vegetables and 21 essential vitamins, and have been designed to be highly nutritious and easy to prepare - bringing hope and a sense of security to our country’s most vulnerable children.

“We may not be able to build a perfect world, but we can all make a difference by doing our bit to stop hunger and feed our country’s empty stomachs,” adds Ruberto Jantjies, Oceana Group HR Administrator.

“Mandela Day is a collective humanitarian effort dedicated to improving the quality of life for all,” says Kuttel. “It may start with 67 minutes of your time committed to helping those less fortunate, but this day is really also about instilling a compassionate sensitivity to our fellow man, woman and child that is carried in our hearts throughout the year.”