“Food has been my love language ever since I can remember,” says Karyn Smith. “From my humble beginnings selling boerewors rolls and burgers at the motor cross track, a boutique food store at Shongweni market and owning the tuck shop/coffee shop at a local high school, to catering for weddings and large functions all over the country.”
When the flooding first hit, Karyn saw the difficulties encountered by staff at school and at home, and started arranging cooked meals and food parcels for them. “Once the devastation in the communities started to filter through, the requests for help just snowballed,” says Karyn.
“We were doing soups, sandwiches, meal parcels and food hampers… and then clothing – which was so generously donated by the kids from Curro High School,” says Karyn, adding that over 1 500 food hampers were distributed in the first week and giving thanks to Judy Maher, Carey Roberts, Janine Magree, Debbie Punnick, Michelle Haarhoff, Merle Westcott, Nicole Coetzee, Sanele Gasa, Mike and Leanne Egling and Lindani Ndlovu – their tireless Uber driver. “Cherie Metzler formed a group called The Kitchen Angels, where we co-ordinated the collections, drop-offs, cooking and meal preps.”
120 hampers and some cases of water to distribute even came from as far away as Johannesburg. “This absolutely blew us away and we are so grateful,” says Karyn.
Food and meal hampers were also directed at the rescue workers who worked tirelessly during this time. “I have such an amazing network of superheroes I can call friends!” says Karyn – who is inspired by our community’s ability to come together in times of need.
Karyn also helped supply food and warm beverages to the patrollers at various stations in and around the Hillcrest area during the looting last year – for those that worked the night shifts. “As long as we the have resources and people need it, we will continue with this,” she says.
FOR MORE INFO: Contact Karyn on 082 828 2223 if you can help.