RUTH Maetisa was disturbed when she saw young children scrounging for food.
The children were all over Alexandra, Gauteng, where she lived. They looked unkempt, malnourished and abandoned. She thought she should do more than just sympathise with them.
That is how Thandanani, a collection agency for feeding schemes and child centres, was born in 2007.
Mama Angel donated food, which Maetisa will deliver to Mama Jackie's Defli Home for 54 children in Diepsloot. The abandoned children live in one house with a caretaker. Sometimes the police also bring children to the home.
The other food will go to Phuthanang Safe Home and soup kitchen in Vosloorus.
"Thandanani raises funds for seven children's homes and soup kitchens around Gauteng. We are especially concerned about orphans and abandoned children," Maetisa said.
She said some children live at home but had no food because households depended on one breadwinner. Thandanani looks after about 100 children each in Ekurhuleni, Johannesburg central, Soweto, Hillbrow and Diepsloot.
Thandanani's offices are in Lovedale Street in Johannesburg. Its eight board members raise funds for the project.
A qualified auditor and a bookkeeper take care of the books. Thandanani can tap into a 1000 companies for specific projects.
Maetisa, 35, gained her experience while working for Aaakee (Abused and abandoned kids educational excursions in Kensington.
"Our primary aim is to relieve the homes and centres from having to scrabble around for funds and food. We provide the basics, which leave them with time to look after the children," Maetisa said.
"We raise funds and take the children for holidays to Cape Town, Durban and so on.
"We provide summer and winter school uniforms and buy shacks for the homeless through the Adcon Programme.
"We thank Sowetan and your readers for the food."