Lo! Those who believe and do good works,
And establish worship and pay the poor-due,
Their reward is with their Lord,
And there shall no fear come upon them, neither shall they grieve.
The Holy Qur’an; Chapter 2 (The Cow), Verse 277
Well before its inception, Peaceful Souls Foundation started charitable projects to provide relief to those in need. The original plans to set up a food bank have been put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but will be launched as soon as logistics and space are available to allow people to drop in for free supplies.
Already in place and fully functional is a clothes’ bank. We have received several donations of clothing items from generous volunteers. These are gradually being sorted and displayed at a location in Castel, Vacoas. We had requested items of good quality and we have not been disappointed overall. Items that we feel are not worthy of distribution are simply not put on display.
The concept is simple – whoever is in need of clothes can drop in on open days and choose one or more items of clothing on display, according to their taste and size. It is exactly as one would do while going out shopping for clothes, except that all items are entirely free of charge!
The difference with other clothing drives is that the beneficiary has absolute choice over the items they prefer, while being assured of their quality. We believe that this is a good way of giving our beneficiaries the dignity that they deserve, while ensuring that they have as close a shopping experience as normal.
So far, there have been 3 open days on Saturday 8th May, Sunday 5th September, and Sunday 3rd October 2021. In between these dates, selected NGOs were invited for a private collection. Overall, around 1900 individual items of clothing have been given away for free, which has made a significant difference to the beneficiaries, according to their own testimonies.
Feedback received has highlighted 2 main positive features of this campaign:- The quality of clothes available; and the ability to choose individual items according the beneficiary’s size and personal taste. We are henceforth planning to have an open half-day on the first Sunday of every month as from October 2021 to facilitate access and widen the scheme.
Over and above the clothing drive, the Community Food Programme was started in February 2022. This involves a monthly donation of cooked meals or supplies to people or institution(s) in need. The first event was at Camp Diable Home, where lunch was prepared and delivered to all the residents and staff.
Since then, donations have followed every month at Havre d’Avenir, Madame Gaspard Centre, Passerelle Women’s Centre, Currimjee Jeewanjee Infirmary, and the Mauritius Muslim Orphanage. Emergency supplies were also delivered to Passerelle Women’s Centre at the end of July, following an urgent appeal. This initiative is planned to continue every last week of the month and requires regular donations as well as volunteer support to remain successful.
Otherwise, there are several other charitable projects in development, which we hope to come forward with once we are fully operational and have enough volunteers on board. These include medical, educational, and sponsorship initiatives. Please stay tuned or reach out to us should you wish to find out more.