Here’s an African trio to bring you joy

Soap of hope

Not-for-profit soap that’s changing lives while making you smell edible

Who knew something as simple as soap could give someone hope? Top-notch handmade soaps are creating work and a viable future for previously unemployed women and their families. And you can support them and smell gorgeous at the same time, wherever you are in the world!

Created from alluring ingredients such as sunflower seed and coconut oil and free of dyes, preservatives and chemicals, these soaps are good for sensitive skin. Wash with them and you’ll smell edible: we have to say we rather like the thought of exiting the shower smelling of chai latte or cinnamon.

Give Her Hope, the company behind these fragrant offerings, is not-for-profit and has been run as a job creation initiative by Jubilee Church in Observatory, Cape Town for six years. ‘When you buy one of our soaps, you aren’t enabling a CEO to get a faster car, you’re enabling women to provide basic essentials for their families,’ says Jo Loizides, who runs the company.

The soaps are nicely packaged for gift giving, so consider stocking up your present drawer with a batch. The more business you can bestow upon Give Her Hope, the more women it employs. 

Empower an otherwise unemployed woman and shop online at www.giveherhope.co.za. Delivery throughout South Africa and bulk orders are welcomed from local and international companies who wish to sell Give Her Hope soaps in their stores
Employee Brenda Adams (left) with colleagues Sharon Thom (centre) and Nandipha Madyosi: ‘It’s nice to be able to walk out of your door every morning to go to work.’

Open house: art @ home 

Neighbourly acts of kindness have launched a meaningful arts experience

How lovely that neighbourly acts of kindness are what sparked off this township arts encounter. Back in 2001, painter Siphiwe Ngwenya had just graduated from the National School of Arts and was hosting an open-air exhibition at his home when the heavens opened. All looked doom and gloom until neighbours offered to keep his art in their homes so that it wouldn’t get wet and visitors could keep on viewing.

Siphiwe began to ask himself if it were possible to create employment in the townships via an authentic art experience for locals and tourists. And thus was born the Maboneng (Place of Light) Township Arts Experience.

Since that day, hundreds of township dwellers have opened their homes as art galleries, receiving dividends of ticket and sale profits. Visitors to Cape Town, Stellenbosch and Johannesburg are welcomed into the homes to view art, chat to families and often engage with the artists in areas such as Gugulethu, Khayamandi, Langa, Alexandra and Soweto.

With mini-economies created through the displaying and selling of art, it’s good to see that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side: people are making a plan to water it right here.

To book a visit to the home galleries, visit www.maboneng.com. Tours run daily. Half-day tours cost R950, and full-day tours are R1500. Group discounts applicable. All art is for sale and transport can be arranged

Nude revolution

Bring your own container to buy Nude Foods’ conditioner/shampoo/body wash

Have you heard about Cape Town’s nude shopping experience? (We know what you’re thinking but this isn’t THAT kind of mag). It’s a zero-waste, plastic-free shopping experience that challenges your shopping habits for the better.

So, how does it work? Customers bring their own jars or buy jars from the store, fill them up, weigh and pay. No plastic bags, plastic containers or opportunity to litter. Simple ⎯ not to mention an emptier kitchen bin and a bill without packaging costs to inflate it.

Who goes to Nude Foods? ’Everyone from students to pensioners looking for a more mindful shopping experience,’ says Paul Rubin, who runs the show. His most popular items include kombucha on tap, nutritional yeast, olive oil, raw apple cider vinegar, freshly ground nut butters, shampoo bars and buzzy wraps (that’s organic beeswax food wrapping for your sandwiches, lovies). Earth-friendly cleaning products go down well too. If Coca-Cola and a Big Mac ain’t what you crave and you’re feeling kind of Amish, you’ve got to give Nude Foods a whirl at least once.

5 Constitution Street, Zonnebloem, Cape Town. Mondays: 10:30am to 6pm, Tuesdays to Fridays: 9am to 6pm, Saturdays: 9am to 2pm. Closed Sundays. For more info, go to www.nudefoods.co.za or call 021 437 3003
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