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National Children’s Day – their rights must always be protected

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As we celebrate National Children’s Day on the first Saturday of November each year, this day serves as a stark reminder that while we need to highlight the progress being made towards the promotion of rights of children – we also need to be aware that more can, and must be done. 

For us, this day also symbolises a deep-rooted meaning that while every child has the right to nutrition, shelter, healthcare and social services – there are still far too many that don’t enjoy these rights given the deep-seated inequality that still remains. However, even given this is a pressing challenge, we believe that through collective efforts we can help cultivate a brighter future – a future where every child has equal opportunities and a full belly – with the potential to change the world. 

Unfortunately today,  3.1 million children still experience chronic hunger, daily, in South Africa. And the reality is that poor nutrition in early childhood can significantly impair healthy growth and development. Hunger not only affects children’s health, but their ability to live full and productive lives. That’s why hunger represents a violation of their basic human rights – not only the right to food, but also the rights to dignity, health, and education – since all of these are affected by hunger. 

Of course, hunger and poverty are inextricably linked to a host of issues that affect children’s health and while the fight against hunger is not a new one, the country’s economic climate is strained and continues to threaten the livelihoods of many.  Non-Profit Organisations (NPO) have a critical role in driving the potential of South Africa’s children – from protective services to development and education and feeding schemes and nutrition – the interventions they do are essential to helping to break the barriers we face.

One such vital organisation is Child Welfare Free State (CWF), which we have chosen to partner with as the work they do is not only crucial, but speaks to the heart of KFC’s purpose – to feed into people’s potential. 

Our partnership with CWF began in 2019 and we have provided a total of 383 808 meals a year –that’s over 1051 meals a day. This is an NPO that focuses on child protective services, centred on physical or mental neglect; physical, emotional, or sexual abuse; abandonment; ill-treatment or harmful living conditions. And part of this means ensuring the children they work with are given a safe space, where they are cared for and protected, and given the right nutrition on a daily basis.

This is an organisation that is dedicated to the protection of children’s rights, and fights for them daily. While our food parcel support is only a small cog in this wheel, we are proud to be able to support them in any way we can – because as we know, it is the collective efforts of each and every one of us that will end up making a marked difference. 

CFW is only one such organisation we work with, in fact, KFC’s Add Hope programme has provided 250 million meals to date – supporting more than 130 different non-profit organisations. And we won’t stop here, our collective ambition is to reach the 500 million meals delivered by 2030, as we are only too aware that much more needs to be done. 

So, remember, this National Children’s Day even a little contribution can go a long way and for all those that stand up for our children –but together we can feed the potential of South Africa’s children.


Andra Nel, Marketing Manager Brand & Purpose at KFC South Africa

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