“I often get told that I’m enabling the homeless people to remain on the streets by giving them a bowl of food and I disagree because if we stop feeding them, they will become more desperate and aggressive in their begging and where would they go?”
These are the words of the founder of Ladles of Love – a local soup kitchen and humanitarian, Danny Diliberto who will be putting himself in the shoes of the homeless for two nights this November. Mr Diliberto is embarking on a 48-hour-challenge living on the streets of Cape Town with no money, credit card, phone and no outside assistance.
The aim of this challenge is to change the narrative on homelessness and get the conversation about the issue started. Mr Diliberto said homelessness is a challenge not only in South Africa but in the whole world. He said wants to bring the issue to the forefront. “I want to show people how difficult it is to get off the streets, I want them to look at this issue with from a different perspective and know that everyone can all make a difference,” he said.
Mr Diliberto said he on the two nights he will connect with the homeless people and get to understand their stories. He said he will involve other organisations that try and help homeless people get off the streets. He said he wants to know their limits and the shelters have criteria and rules and a lot of homeless people don’t like the rules.
Mr Diliberto said he doesn’t support giving out money because they usually use it for drugs. “There are many ways we can help them, it would be great if we could bring up their self-esteem, they can start thinking better about themselves. We all need to start somewhere,” he said.
He said he’s always been passionate about giving back to the less fortunate but, he never really knew how to do it.”I remember being in a breathing and meditation class and I heard the Sankrit word ‘Seva’ which means selfless service, I realised that it was what I wanted to do,” he said.
Mr Dilliberto said it was a homeless person that made him realise that a cup of soup could restore someone’s dignity even if for a few minutes and he never looked back. He is hoping to raise R40,000, enough to sponsor another 4,000 meals at his kitchens for the homeless. He’s calling on the members of the public to do something, no matter how small in helping the less fortunate.
Ladles of Love has been serving the homeless community for over 4 years now, providing a hot, tasty and healthy meal in 3 locations each week. Donations to date are just over R22,000. To get involved visit: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/homeless-in-cape-town-the-48hr-challenge