Where to donate clothing, blankets & food to in Cape Town this winter

The city’s been hit with unprecedented storms, leaving most of us stunned & so many homeless & in need of assistance. But what can you do to help? There are organisations who are working hard to provide assistance to homeless persons or families who need help during this difficult season. We’ve looked for a few, but would love to hear from you if you personally know of other worthy charity organisations to add to the list.

thehavenThe Haven Night Shelter

This organisation has shelters in many locations, and a quick visit there will tell you that they’re always in need of more help. It is hard to make use of the donation option on their website (they send you a form, but rarely reply to e-mails), so it’s best to give them a call & make contact directly. They have good people working hard to make life a little more comfortable for those with nowhere else to go, so giving to them will certainly help share your own good fortune. Donations can be of cash, clothing, linen, food – anything!


thearkThe Ark night shelter

Another hard-working organisation, The Ark takes donations of clothing, furniture, shoes, anything that can be used to sell in their charity stores or to distribute to those in need.

Visit Donation Town for more information on how to deliver or have your goods picked up: http://www.donationtown.org/charity/arc-donation-pick-up.html


U- Turn

An organisation focussed on changing the cycle of begging & street living, U-Turn offers a voucher service for those who would like to support underprivileged people without giving out small (and ultimately, less helpful) bits of change at the traffic lights. They also collect second-hand clothing & anything else you may have to share (including your time). Their main objective is to uplift those living on the street, and not only provide them with shelter or food. They run regular workshops, and offer business breakfasts so that all of us can find out what we can do to uplift our community. Look at their website (it’s a really good one) below:


wpblueThe WP Care Centre

This is a non-denominational organisation which supports school feeding programmes, needs for underprivileged elderly persons, and more.


spcaThe SPCA

Over the past weekend, many many animals suffered in the storm, and the SPCA is having to work even harder than usual to care for the injured animals. Stray animals, as well as companion animals of people who cannot afford to take them to private vets are all serviced by the SPCA, and they could use your help this winter.


The above are just some of the MANY hardworking organisations out there. Please visit the Charity SA pages for more details, as they have a comprehensive list of the projects, as well as contact information. http://www.charitysa.co.za/western-cape-list

The reality is that, we all know of people who could use some help. Even if the organisation you’re interested in is not directly involved with emergency care this winter, they know of people who could use your help, and so starting somewhere is better than starting nowhere. If you don’t have much in the way of personal finances, try to get the company you work for involved, or see if you could volunteer your time in some way. No donation is too small, and work is best done when done in collaboration with others, so you could be surprised at what you could rustle up!

Most of the charities found are religious-based (largely Christian), though many do not incorporate religious doctrine directly into their helping (though they may do so on their websites). There are some, like the WP Care Centre, which do not support any one particular faith, and this may be a good option for those who feel uncomfortable donating to a faith-based organisation. However, it should be noted that, the need is extremely great & that these organisations are among the most well-established, and have been operating for years, helping communities throughout Cape Town & will do a lot of good with whatever you donate. Nobody is turned away, no matter the faith, and whichever outlet is chosen for spreading resources, as long as you choose a trusted organisation that is guaranteed to share your donation properly, you will get the desired outcome. If you do have more non-faith-based charities to share, please do so & I will add them.

NOAHP.s. a special mention for the following charity: NOAH, a charity dedicated to creating comfortable, happy, dignified & safe living spaces in Cape Town for elderly persons who cannot afford expensive care. The charity provides lovely living conditions, health services, and activities for the aged, and raises funds through their soap-making, as well as through donations via the charity. Unlike the charities listed above, they are not directly involved in collections, but we came across them in our research, and liked the concept so much, we thought we’d pass it on!

Stay warm & stay safe!

From the Thorne Team


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