Mark Nicholson is the co-founder of the non-profit organisation known today as the Lavender Hill Sports and Recreation Foundation. Affiliated to the Community Action Network (CAN) within the Western Cape. Mark started by doing recreational activities with the children and young people of Lavender Hill in Cape Town in 2010, starting with a soccer and netball club a dance academy and girls long board and skate board team have been added. The initiative stemmed from the need to get the youth off the streets, keep them out of trouble and away from the luring gangsterism/ gang activity present in his community.
Mark and his team have been successfully kept 100’s of lavender Hill kids off the street through their sports programmes and community support initiatives which brings much needed private and government attention to the area. The tragic hit of COVID-19 has now created a hunger crisis in the area. The majority of people living in Lavender Hill are of the lower income spectrum of South Africa, thus most bread winners have lost their jobs or have been forced to stay home without remuneration from the organisations they currently work for. Mark identified the need and started a feeding scheme out of his own pocket. It started with 100 children and they currently feed 500 children and adults per day. Mark and his team serves his community tirelessly, with prayer and love.
As we all know, life will not just resume back to “normal” after the decrease in Coronavirus cases and ultimately the lift of the national lock down. Companies have closed down, people have lost their jobs and do not have an income to look forward to soon after the reinstatement of the South African economy.
That said, Mark and his volunteers intend to serve their community for the long term. They currently feed 1000 people per week and have a goal to double that by Winter 2020. There are 3 informal feed schemes which Mark supports with food supplies on a daily bases, they each feed 120 children per day.
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