Children at Hulani Day Care Centre
On a recent trip to South Africa, global CEO of Yum! Brands, Greg Creed, visited HOPE worldwide’s Hulani Day Care Centre in Cosmo City, Johannesburg.
HOPE worldwide is one of the 138 beneficiary organisations that KFC’s Add Hope initiative supports around the country. The visit shows just how important the KFC feeding scheme, which combines KFC’s Corporate Social Responsibility funds with R2 donations from customers, is to the international parent company.
The event also marked seven years of partnership between Add Hope and HOPE worldwide, and the day was celebrated with festivities including music and dance performed by the children. Dr Marc Aguirre, Country Director HOPE worldwide SA, said,“We’re so grateful for the partnership with Add Hope, which helps us ensure that the children have the healthy food they need to thrive. This is especially important in the early years when the brain is developing most rapidly. What happens in childhood lasts a lifetime and we have hundreds of young lives that have been transformed.”
HOPE worldwide focuses on investing in young children through Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centre support, Community ECD Parenting programmes, Nutritional Support and through their ‘Adopt a Family’ programme. Hulani Day Care Centre is one of 200 ECD centres across the country under the wing of HOPE worldwide and currently cares for 96 children between the ages of 1 – 6 years from Cosmo City and the surrounding areas.
Aguirre says poverty, unemployment and food prices are all on the increase, making it even tougher for households to provide adequate nutrition for their children. “Social grants help, but often not enough. For nearly 20% of children, skipped meals are all too common. Tragically, millions of children in South Africa are being robbed of their future because of hunger and malnutrition and we cannot afford to let this continue. The cost of inaction is too high, not only for our children’s future but also for the future of this country as a whole. My hope for the future is to see every vulnerable child in this country have access to good nutrition, stimulation and nurturing, and that will transform this country forever.”
The Add Hope initiative has grown to support sustainable feeding programmes across South Africa, partnering with 138 national and local organisations to provide over 120,000 children with nutritious meals daily. Thabisa Mkhwanazi, the KFC Public Affairs Director for Africa and Add Hope champion, says, “We’re proud that Add Hope, born in South Africa, is now being adopted by KFC in other countries as part of YUM! International’s focus on hunger relief. Add Hope has raised over R500 million since 2009, which shows incredible support from our customers. However, we still have a long way to go to help turn the tide on hunger and partnering with our customers to support centres like Hulani Daycare is the most effective way that we can do this.”