Hunger set ball rolling

JUlia Mokoena began Matjele community project in 2007 after a group of children asked her for food.

JUlia Mokoena began Matjele community project in 2007 after a group of children asked her for food.

Since then, she feeds orphans, vulnerable children, the terminally ill and poor people in Mapetla, Soweto. Matjele also has outreach programmes in Tshiawelo, Phiri, Merafe Hostel and parts of Protea Glen.

The project helps people to access grants and it counsels victims of abuse. It also supervises children who have to take ARV and TB medication.

"We have to observe them because they sometimes default because there is no food at home," Mokoena said.

"Most families do not have any income so the children can only take the pills after we give them a meal.

Mama Angel was met with ululating and hugs when she donated groceries for the Easter break.

"Thanks to Sowetan for helping us feed our children. Please do not break off the relationship. We hope God will strengthen your arm so that you can do more for everyone," Mokoena said.

"We have applied for funding to the department of social welfare and we are still waiting for a reply. We get funding from companies in the area, ENM Trading, the Metro Police, Nashua and the Food Bank.

"I run Matjele with the help of my neighbours. Some are the parents of the children and some come from Merafe Hostel."

Mokoena said she is looking for bigger premises for the project. At present, they use a container that she bought when she first started. Now it is too small for all the work she does in the community. She is hoping that someone will sponsor their electricity bill.

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