Mandela Day: CHOC Launch Helpful Wishlists to Aid Children Fighting Cancer

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This Mandela Day, you can support the CHOC hub in your region by either donating food to their kitchens, helping repair a jungle gym or training their staff in a much-needed skill.


South Africa (01 July 2022) – Mandela Day is around the corner, celebrated on the late Nelson Mandela’s birthday, 18 July. This year CHOC has set up several wishlists for their different regions that people can use to support children with cancer.

The CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA is a non-profit organisation that advocates for the health and well-being of children and teenagers diagnosed with cancer or life-threatening blood disorders. The passionate and dedicated staff and volunteers of CHOC aim to save lives through early detection and comprehensive support programmes for the families affected by cancer, such as; accommodation, transport assistance, psychosocial, emotional and practical support and more. They also provide awareness and education on childhood cancer and life-threatening blood disorders.

The staff that help keep things running at these facilities play such a wonderful role in bringing ease and comfort to families going through the biggest battles.

One of the big parts of this care is good nutrition, and each house has a caregiver who is responsible for cooking wholesome meals. ​​​​Lerato Kortjass from the KwaZulu-Natal Region shares what they cook and use in their CHOC houses.

“At our CHOC houses caregivers alternate in cooking meals. Many caregivers sometimes insist on cooking even when it’s someone else’s turn. For breakfast, it is usually maize meal porridge or bread with peanut butter and jam. Sometimes boiled or scrambled eggs. Lunch is also provided and often depends on what the families feel like eating. Dinner consists of either Phuthu, rice, dumplings or Samp with a different gravy or curry for each. Sometimes chicken or lamb curry, beans and chutney. The popular favourite at the house is brown beans and dumplings.

In other cases, the preparation of meals is no ordinary affair. Caregivers like to experiment by trying out different recipes that they have found on the internet; curries, desserts and muffins. If the results turn out well, everyone gets to enjoy the meal and if not, we have a good laugh and still enjoy the beautifully ruined meal.

Because their children are going through such a difficult time, many of the caregivers find cooking to be therapeutic more than just a chore. Many families are also grateful for the nutritious meals offered by CHOC, that they otherwise would not get in their own homes. Our food program remains important for this very reason.”

Each of the houses in the seven regions has a food wishlist for Mandela Day. You can support CHOC this Mandela Day by donating food, your time or skills to the organisation. They have a wishlist for each of their seven regional hubs which you can find below. Each contains a list of goods needed, but some also have projects that need working on or skills their staff need training in.

Mandela Day is about more than just handing out donations or spending an hour painting. If you have a skill you can share, your contribution goes beyond your 67 minutes.

Sources: CHOC – Newsletter
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Mandela Day: CHOC Launch Helpful Wishlists to Aid Children Fighting Cancer