Dutch government donates food parcels

A total of 130 food parcels were handed over to Northwood Primary School.
A total of 130 food parcels were handed over to Northwood Primary School.

The Dutch government has teamed up with local online retailer Yebo Fresh, and Netherlands-based Run4Schools, to donate 530 food parcels to Mitchell’s Plain residents.

The donations started with 130 food parcels distributed to families at Northwood Primary School on Wednesday 8 July.

“Northwood Primary School in Woodlands wishes to acknowledge and thank the Dutch Consulate for their contribution with Run4Schools and Yebo Fresh in making generous donations to our school,” says school principal Leon Jones.

“Our school is situated in a historically disadvantaged area, and our community faces the insurmountable challenges of high unemployment, drug and alcohol abuse, teenage pregnancy, gangsterism and violence. These factors all negatively impact on the quality of life and, generally, self-esteem and morale are low. We are grateful to the Dutch Consulate for bringing a glimmer of hope to a pre-existing marginalised community who can only benefit from this benevolence, and we can only express the hope that the amicable ties forged with this Consulate will continue to grow from strength to strength.”

The Netherlands Embassy and Consulate were amazed by the initiatives taken by local businesses and charitable organisations, and agrees that growth occurs when working together.

“We as the Netherlands Embassy and Consulate praise the crucial role played by all who are filling in the gap in a bid to alleviate the hardship faced by those hardest hit by the lockdown. It is heart-wrenching to see people suffer from hunger, and horrible to witness so many unable to make ends meet. We are in awe of the measures being taken by businesses and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) like Yebo Fresh and Run4Schools. In the face of a major global challenge, our partnership is needed now more than ever and continues to stand strong. We can achieve so much more together than apart,” says Sebastiaan Messerschmidt, Consul General of the Netherlands in South Africa.

Jessica Boonstra, Founder of Yebo Fresh, says they were excited to get on board with the initiative.

In acknowledging the need in the community, Run4Schools founder Leslie Pangemanan says the handover will be greatly beneficial.

“The need was incredibly high, the queues for our distribution points in and around our schools were very long, and deliveries were not always without danger. However, every package was successfully delivered to families in need.”

Following the first handover, three more handovers are planned for the remainder of Mitchell’s Plain.

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