26 May 2020

Feed the hungry, spread peace! Organisations launch long-term partnership in South Africa to serve the vulnerable

Submitted by Monica Steyn

Humanitarian organisations, the Yusuf Islam Foundation and Penny Appeal South Africa have partnered with a vision to help vulnerable communities across South Africa.

As part of their ‘Peacetrain initiative’, which takes its name from the famous peace anthem ‘Peace Train’ by Yusuf / Cat Stevens, the next stage of the partnership will see the Yusuf Islam Foundation fund a project aimed at supporting vulnerable communities. The funding ensures Penny Appeal is able to implement and provide a range of sustainable interventions for the transformation within the communities.

Commenting on the collaborative efforts, CEO of Penny Appeal South Africa, Shahnaaz Paruk says: “South Africa is faced with three major threats, namely poverty, unemployment and inequality.  The Yusuf Islam Foundation has shown its long-term commitment to the people of South Africa and in an extremely critical time in our country, this on-going support will allow us to continue advocating for families struggling with adequate access to food, healthcare, screening, awareness sessions and sustainable solutions to food insecurity. All interventions are aimed at addressing immediate and long-term hunger relief and transformation of communities”.

Penny Appeal South Africa, which is a registered non-profit relief and development organisation, has identified ten communities across the Western Cape and Kwa-Zulu Natal provinces that are in dire need of nutrition support. The funding will aid in their fight in ending hunger, achieving food security and promoting sustainable agriculture, while including elements of promoting healthy lifestyles.

Details of the Peacetrain project include Peacetrain mobile vehicles visiting selected communities monthly. Families will not only receive food packs but every visit will include regular health awareness sessions focused across a variety of topics ranging from early cancer screening to HIV/AIDS awareness sessions. Additional services will provide them with valuable resources and knowledge and empower them to practice healthier lifestyle practices. Families will also be encouraged to sell surplus produce and help generate income through on-going education and training sessions on establishing and sustaining food gardens.

Distribution days to the communities will also serve as awareness days that will benefit families including activities such as breast cancer screenings, HIV/Aids voluntary testing, financial awareness and career guidance.  Penny Appeal South Africa will be working with community leaders to identify families and safe distribution points in each community,” adds Paruk.


The Yusuf Islam Foundation is a registered charity founded by Yusuf Islam (also known as Cat Stevens) based in London (UK), working in education, relief and peace-building. Yusuf / Cat Stevens toured South Africa for the first time in 2017 in a sell-out tour across the country. 

For further information or opportunities to contribute to those in need, please visit www.pennyappeal.org.za or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Notes to Editor:

About Penny Appeal South Africa

Penny Appeal is a registered non-profit relief and development organization which focuses on transforming communities and lives globally.  Penny Appeal South Africa provides aid to communities in need, and advocating and addressing the needs of marginalized groups.  Their focus is largely on food distributions, sustainable livelihoods, water solution projects, education, early childhood development, health, female empowerment and much more throughout South Africa.  Their campaigns reach across Africa, Asia and the Middle East and provides support by sponsoring orphans and orphan homes, responding to emergencies and disasters, and  providing access to clean water.  

About Yusuf Islam Foundation

The Yusuf Islam Foundation’s Peace Train Initiative works to achieve peace through provision of food and basic necessities to the vulnerable: “Eradication of poverty is the way to peace” Yusuf / Cat Stevens.  They work with a select number of partners worldwide funding projects with an objective to ‘feed the hungry and spread peace’.

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Release sent on behalf of Penny Appeal South Africa