Domestic worker Lauren Juries uses her small kitchen to feed hungry neighbours in Ottery, Cape Town.
Cooking for the hungry has always been her passion, but it was only during the national lockdown that she got to fulfil her dream of helping the needy.
She has opened a Backabuddy fundraising page and she hopes to reach her initial target of R100 000.
For domestic worker, Lauren Juries, servicing her community through cooking has always been a dream.
“A few years ago, when I started working in town, as I came with the train I always saw the homeless under the bridges and that was a dream for me just to feed them,” she told News24.
It was only when the national lockdown was implemented that she slowly began feeding her hungry neighbours in Ottery, Cape Town, with the little extra that she had.
“I did feed about two or three families with my own money, I’d make a pot of food and take it to them, and then in April I asked my employer Tracy Gander if there is any way that she can help me,” she said.
Gander made the first donation to Juries’ cause and has since assisted her with all the marketing for her campaign and in finding sponsors.
Juries said it was “hectic” in her community in the beginning stages of lockdown.
‘Now or never’
“When lockdown started, I could really see that you have to start doing something now; it’s now or it’s never,” she said.
According to Juries, children were constantly asking her for money so that they could buy food, or they would be waiting outside the local Shoprite begging for bread and polony.
She said there are about 10 soup kitchens operating in the greater Ottery community – some do breakfasts or lunches while she cooks suppers.
In one day, Juries feeds between 250-300 people, mainly children, whose favourite meal is the macaroni and tinned fish.
“When I started, I never thought that people would love the food that I’m making. But because I do the same as how I would prepare food for myself and my family, that’s how I do it for them, and they actually enjoy it,” she said.