Family inspires teenager to feed the needy

People queue in Juniper Street every morning for some warm porridge.

A Bonteheuwel teen is determined to make a change in her community by feeding the less fortunate, and she’s roped in her whole family to help.

Ayesha Roode, 17, wakes up at 6am daily to make porridge for the 250-odd people who queue outside her home in Juniper Street.

She says she was inspired by her father’s love for the community and growing up seeing her mom, Kashiefa, making something to eat for the person who knocked at the door. Her sister Toufieqah, 20, also helps her with the feeding scheme.

Ayesha, who is in matric this year, says she hopes to feed more people in the near future.

Soup, akhni, mixed vegetables, and curry and rice are among the meals she serves, all made possible by donations from her family and community.

This is part of the Bonteheuwel Forum’s Street and Block Committee’s network of 34 feeding schemes in the area.

“Each person walks away with a smile and a parcel of food. People say they feel very blessed because now they know where they can come if they are hungry,” says Ayesha.

Her father, Abdurgamaan, coordinates the feeding scheme and says he is very proud of his daughters for caring about the community so much.

“I hope that more people will come on board.”

Henriette Abrahams, the chairwoman of the Bonteheuwel Forum’s Street and Block Committee’s feeding scheme, says Ayesha and her family are a blessing.

“Their energy and commitment to our cause and vision to build a safe, healthy and prosperous Bonteheuwel is amazing. It is youth such as the Roode sisters that makes our everyday hustle to serve our people’s needs and bread and butter issues literally and figuratively. These two young women are my new heroes in our block committee, our organisation and in our area. I am in absolute awe of their kind and caring spirit of ubuntu. Our future looks bright with youth such as the Roode sisters leading the way.”

To make donations call Abduragmaan Roode on 073 865 3714.