University charity’s goodwill gesture of festive food parcels

A Coventry University-led charity is spreading some overseas festive cheer this Christmas. 

The University’s Tabeisa charity has distributed food parcels amongst the poorest neighbourhoods of Cape Town, South Africa. Set up by the University in 1994, Tabeisa has been working for the past twenty years to support the economic and social development of the country’s poverty stricken communities. As part of its work Tabeisa supports people within these districts to work for themselves and since its inception over 2,000 small businesses have been supported in some of the most deprived areas of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Tabeisa has a trading arm called Exclusive Roots which has a shop in Oxford as well as an online store and they sell a range of clothing, jewellery and accessories created by those that the charity has helped to support.

All profits from Exclusive Roots are reinvested back into the work of Tabeisa and this year for the first time the charity distributed food parcels as a festive treat to its crafters and producers. The packages, containing mostly dry foodstuffs such as flour and rice with bonus boxes of biscuits included, were handed out last Friday.

In a further goodwill gesture, the charity also handed out food parcels to Big Issue sellers in Cape Town on Wednesday this week. 

Jane Conlon, Director of Tabeisa said: “Our charity is about helping people to help themselves but as it’s the festive season we were happy to offer food parcels as Christmas gifts. This is the first stage in a new activity we are undertaking called The Food Collective where we are going to be using the power of volume buying to reduce the price of basic foodstuffs for underprivileged people. The Food Collective will be operating from January 2014 onwards.”