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volunteer 2021

While the impact of Covid-19 has no borders rich or poor, those living in the developing world will suffer the most. We must extend our immediate support to them, at a time when hunger, fear, illness and uncertainty about the future has never been more real.”

Niall Mellon, Mellon Educate Founder


Help us to Save Children And Their Families From Starvation

Since South Africa’s military-patrolled lockdown to reduce the spread of Covid 19 began on 27th March, Mellon Educate has been at the forefront of humanitarian efforts to alleviate a hunger pandemic sweeping townships and informal settlements in the Western Cape. Mellon Educate’s frontline staff distributed thousands of food parcels and supported community kitchens in areas such as Khayelitsha, Manenberg, Mfuleni and Wallacedene. To date the charity has impacted the nutritional wellbeing of 96,583 people including children attending its schools. This lifeline has only been possible due to the overwhelming generosity of Mellon Educate volunteers and donors.  However, in a country with one of the strictest government curfews already over a month old and set to continue for the foreseeable future, desperation in these most deprived areas is mounting daily.  Poverty related crime and violence are natural consequences, so much so that the charity now has to rely on private security as well as local police, to keep its food supplies secure and staff as well as recipient families safe

Please Help Me!

Hi, please I beg of you I am in need of any kind of  help. I know you drop food at my child’s school but we do not get any.  I have sold almost sell all my stuff just to put food on the table but now I have nothing left to sell.

Please I will do anything, I will work for any amount. Help me please, I don’t have anything we are Malawian and we get nothing from the government, please I beg of you….”

Everyday Mellon Educate staff receive desperate messages from parents who aren’t able to feed their children.  This letter is just one that shows why your donation is so urgent.


Make a Donation

Food parcels delivered since the 27th of March


People reached


20euros/£15GBP can provide food for a family of 6-9 people for one whole month

Thousands of Desperate Hungry people need your help

Without your support children and those most vulnerable in township communities will suffer the worst effects of this global Covid crisis.  Please help us to feed them and keep them safe and well.  For just 20euros/£15GBP you can provide food for a family of 6-9 people for one whole month.

Make a Donation


From the Frontline

Our Mellon heroes share their thoughts….

  • “Things the lockdown has taught me:  We have so much to be thankful for.  There are far too many people struggling everyday just to put food on their tables. People do care.  The way in which all races, all creeds are showing up for each other at such a challenging time is so incredibly heartening.”

    Denise Lee Ruiter, Literacy Specialist
  • “There are so many desperately hungry people who are just so grateful for our help.”

    Benni Roussow, Mathematics Specialist
  • "I am so thankful that I’m part of such a special initiative.  It’s a wonderful feeling to see hundreds of food parcels packed into vehicles to be taken to the various schools for distribution. It is amazing to see the joy on both the Mellon team’s faces and the faces of the families receiving our help and their words of gratitude are music to my ears.  Being on the frontline is heart breaking, but the passion is so uplifting to see.”

    Rose Cooper, Blitz Coordinator SA
  • “I’m so grateful for the opportunity to help with such a fantastic cause.  I’ve learnt so much along the way and it is truly the most wonderful experience to be able to do something positive for families in such need.”

    Lizzie Waterboer, Office Assistant
  • “Packing up the food parcels is great fun and I really enjoy the experience.  I want to thank Mellon Educate for this wonderful initiative - it’s such a thrill to be part of such a great team effort.  It also gives me great pleasure to see how happy the families are when they receive the food parcels.  To all Mellon supporters thank you for looking after our communities. Stay safe and be blessed.”

    Agnes Boer, Receptionist
  • “I see tremendous strength across our Mellon Covid 19 Team, to just do what needs to be done, without any thought of personal impact. When we distribute the parcels, I see a frighteningly endless need for food, desperate hunger on the faces of so many we help.  I feel gratitude for the amazing support we have from our teams in Ireland and the UK, and for our incredible volunteers….I think of Niall, his vision and leadership and the legacy of 18 years supporting people in the poorest communities…I feel great pride!”

    Bernadette Smyth, Strategic Partnerships
  • “Working within our schools communities always humbles me and fills my heart with joy. The food parcel drives are a real eye opener. The sad reality of hunger and poverty in our communities is all around you. Seeing the children and families waiting patiently as they queue up for the food parcels brings tears to my eyes. Looking at them being so appreciative and happy for the food given to them is so amazing. Growing up in poverty myself, this initiative reaffirms my purpose in life, giving back to the less fortunate and needy. Thanks to the Mellon Educate team for the dedication and enthusiasm they have shown.  I can’t thank our volunteers enough for all their amazing efforts to make this possible.”

    BABALWA MPUMALUMPA, Charity Director & Senior Community Liaison Officer
  • “The Food Parcel Drive has brought me deeper insight, understanding and appreciation. I’ve seen the real need that exists beyond what one already knows, I feel that this work we are doing is so important and I am incredibly grateful to be part of it. The amazing team effort, of pulling together regardless of what is asked of you, instils a great sense of pride in me and for Mellon Educate as a whole. Being on the frontline is both heart breaking and uplifting.   Seeing the desperation is very sobering and the smiles of delight bring us great joy.”

    HOLLY HAYES, Partnership & Programme Development
  • “The food parcel drives are a constant reminder of the inequalities in our country, so being able to help with a basic need such as food brings great joy to my heart. Our Mellon team works really hard behind the scenes and on the frontline to ensure all the correct measures are in place to make a maximum impact, where safety and wellbeing for all remains a priority. The feeling of giving to others is insatiable and I have grown through this experience in ways that I can’t describe.  Thank you to everyone who has made this possible!”

    SHLUMELO SWARTZ, Social Media
  • “Seeing the community lining up to receive food parcels leaves me with mixed emotions. I am extremely saddened that people have to queue up to receive food.  But the humble gratefulness in their voices when giving thanks makes me truly understand the saying that it is greater to give than to receive.  The packing and giving out of food parcels keeps me focussed and grounded.  It reminds me of the reason why I do social work.”

    RONEL NEETHLING, Social Worker 

Latest News

Win a place on the 2021 Building Blitz by raising €250 during the FitBlitz

Thanks to everyone who have registered for the Mellon Educate FitBlitz. So far over 350 people have joined the FitBlitz in helping raise much need funds for education programmes in South Africa. Fundraisers have been helping the work of Mellon Educate by collectively walking, running, or wheeling 10,000km this August; the distance between Dublin, via London to Cape Town.

Join the Mellon Educate FitBlitz this August!

Walk / Run / Wheel 100km with us during the month of August to help support the vital work of Mellon Educate in South Africa. JOIN THE FIBLITZ  Are you up for the Challenge? Of course you are… It’s only 3km or 4000 steps a day to help equip a child in Africa with an