KZN man walks 50km to 'feed a child, feed a nation'

"It is time to act, instead of discussing it on social media."

These are the words of Thulani "DJ Dash" Mzinyane, 32, who will be walking all the way from Ballito to Durban's North Beach later this month.

He told News24 on Friday that the 50km walk is to raise awareness around the killing, abuse and kidnapping of women and children in South Africa.

"The aim of the walk is to encourage people to come up with solutions instead of talking about the scourge facing women and children on social media, including Facebook and Twitter, while nothing is done. It's an emphasis on solutions. People must act now. Sometimes we witness women being beaten by their partners and walk away. That must stop," he said.

Mzinyane became popular in June this year when he walked from Johannesburg to Durban from May 12 to June 11 for his initiative, Feed A Child, Feed A Nation.

Through the initiative, Mzinyane has fed almost 3 000 children this year alone.

He started the initiative in 2012 and has adopted primary schools in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

"Whenever I get donations and sponsorship, I travel to the schools I've adopted, and we buy food and uniforms for needy children from those schools," Mzinyane said.

Motivated by own childhood

He said teachers from his adopted schools make lists of children who need help and give them to him.

Mzinyane, who was born in Vrede, Free State, but has lived in Clermont, KwaZulu-Natal, for the past 15 years, said his upbringing motivated him to start the initiative.

He said his mother died in 1988 when he was only two years old. He has never met his father.


Thulani "DJ Dash" Mzinyane during his walk from Johannesburg to Durban. (Supplied)

"About 70% of my background has influence in what I do now. As much as we were well-off at home, there was a time when I lived in a big house in eMondlo but sometimes there was no care. That's where I realised that money cannot replace the love and care that children need when growing up. So, by coming up with these initiatives I want to give vulnerable children the care that they deserve. I don't want kids to go through what I went through," he said.

He said he believed in the proverb: "It takes a whole village to raise a child."

"All of us can play a part here. If we can change our mindsets we can still do it. There are many people who can feed more children than I'm currently doing but they are ignorant. I'm doing the walks to teach them to be humble and help wherever they can," he said, adding that even though he is just an ordinary club DJ but still does his bit.

Mzinyane said the fact that he was mugged in Durban while he was about to complete his walk from Johannesburg would not deter him.

He will walk from Ballito to Durban on November 29.

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