In the time of Hunger Pandemic, Outside The Bowl Africa, is activating to feed those in need- Mark Maingard tells us why he is focused on eradicating hunger- and making a difference

We are living in the time of the Hunger Pandemic- exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. Listen up: Mark Maingard of Outside The Bowl Africa, is outraged by the estimate that around 6000-12000 people are dying of hunger every day – with children suffering the most. Maingard who is co-founder of the Wellington based, Outside The Bowl Africa, grew up poor and knows what it is like to be hungry. He does not see his role as a job but as a calling. In March 2021, Outside The Bowl Africa, launched The Hunger Campaign #zerohunger2030. The non-profit is driving interest for its birthday campaign for March 2022, when it will host an attempt to make the most Potjiekos -cooked by one person- in one day.

TheCapeRobyn: To mark the 1st birthday of The Hunger Campaign, in March 2022, Outside The Bowl Africa, will be hosting a Potjiekos challenge- the most Potjiekos pots cooked by one person, in one day. It was initially scheduled for October but it was decided to move the event to mark the 1st birthday of The Hunger Campaign?

Mark Maingard: Yes, The Hunger Campaign was launched in March 2021 due to the Covid 19 pandemic. There are now approximately 6000-12000 people dying of hunger every day and the world’s children are suffering the most.  This is a crisis and an outrage. We all need to join forces to fight the Hunger Pandemic. We have built great exposure and the individuals are really stepping up to the plate and pledging on a monthly /recurring basis. As we approach our birthday campaign, we are driving the Potjiekos initiative and asking people to donate so we can feed as many people as possible.

TheCapeRobyn: What is on the cards with the Hunger Campaign – for the rest of the year 2021? Will there be any pop-up events that the public can get involved in or are there any ways of assisting on a regular basis?

Mark Maingard: For the rest of the year, we will continue with our outreach programs. However, people can help the fight, by donating R50 a month. This will ensure a child receives a Vita Kidz Meal every day for a month. This provides 80% of the nutrition a child needs to survive. Outreach events planned for the rest of the year: November 5- Introducing Vita Kidz to Top Fruit Farm School; November 12 – Introducing Vita Kidz to Avondale ECD; November 19 – Superstars ECD;  December 3–   Haven Night Shelter Paarl; December 10– Rusthof Old Age Home; December 15 – Christmas Project with Learning Tree Aftercare – Adopt a child initiative.

TheCapeRobyn: How did you get involved with Outside The Bowl Africa?

Mark Maingard: In 2009 I had a dream and God spoke to me- to use the talent that I’ve been given – to feed the hungry children in my kingdom

TheCapeRobyn:  Was there an incident in your background that spurred you on this journey?

Mark Maingard:  I was born with a giving heart. I grew up very poor and that confirmed my dream which culminated into me wanting to make a difference.

TheCapeRobyn:  Do you work full time with Outside the Bowl Africa?

Mark Maingard: Outside The Bowl Africa is my full-time passion and the reason I live. That is a legacy that I would like to leave behind one day. I have been in the food hospitality industry for 36 years

TheCapeRobyn:  Many feeding schemes dispense food which may be lacking in nutritional value but Outside The Bowl Africa, serves Vitakidz, which it manufactures so it is not just about feeding people but doing so in a way that nourishes them. Plans to add to the range?

Mark Maingard: Yes, we have the Wow Bar that consist of the same nutrients as Vita Kidz. We are also in the process and development stages of an instant Vita Kidz energy drink.

TheCapeRobyn: Do you know the numbers in SA- so far – how many people have died from hunger in SA, because of the pandemic?

Mark Maingard: Food insecurity has long been an issue in South Africa, with 11% of the population (6.5 million people) suffering from hunger in 2019, according to Statistics South Africa. Covid-19 is deepening the hunger crisis across the globe. By the end of the year 12,000 people per day could die from COVID-19 linked hunger, potentially more than the disease. The pandemic is the final straw for millions of people already struggling with the impacts and a broken food system that has impoverished millions of food producers and workers. Access to sufficient food is also crucial for pregnant women and growing children. An estimated 27% of children under the age of five in South Africa, are stunted. This means that they experienced a lack of nutrients in the womb and that can result in lifelong challenges. Children who are stunted are more likely to face learning difficulties and grow to be a lot shorter than children who are not stunted. They’re also highly likely to experience health issues in their adulthood, including diabetes and obesity. 

Mark Maingard [far right] of Outside The Bowl Africa, fighting the Hunger Pandemic in South Africa. Supplied.
To get involved or donate to Outside The Bowl Africa and its Hunger Campaign #zerohunger2030

Find the donate links on website or contact Business Development Manager, Loren Erasmus. E-mail or by mobile 087 550 1257

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