Hello CHOSA family!

Sign up for this year’s World AIDS Day Pap & Porridge Fast! Contact [email protected]

In a few weeks, just after many of us celebrate Thanksgiving, people around the globe will recognize World AIDS Day. December 1st marks a time to come together and remember the millions of lives lost to HIV/AIDS, as well as the children who have been left behind.

Most importantly, World AIDS.

Day is a time to act. If you’re thinking, “what can I do to help?”, consider joining CHOSA’s 2nd annual Pap and Porridge Fast! From November 29-December 1, CHOSA staff, board members, alumni, and friends will stand in solidarity with the children CHOSA serves in South Africa by fasting from all but pap and porridge for three days. Pap and porridge are staple starches which are often the only food available to orphaned and vulnerable children living in desperate poverty. We would love for you to be a part of this act of joining with the families we serve in South Africa in this way.How to participate: Our Fast Team members will ask their loved ones to pledge any amount for each day of their fast – for example, $5 a day totaling a $15 donation to CHOSA’s work. In this way, we will raise awareness about the plight of hungry children in South Africa while raising support for the grassroots organizations that serve them. Please reply to [email protected] today to sign up as a Fast Team member and receive more information, including a pap and porridge recipe.

For those of us who may not be able to make large donations to CHOSA, joining the fast is a powerful way to raise attention and contributions for this important cause! Please reply now and join us. We look forward to hearing from many of you!


Ellie Gunderson
Fundraising Coordinator, CHOSA

P.S. Are you needing some inspiration to get involved? Check out this excerpt from a blog entry written by CHOSA supporter Brittanie Richardson during the fast:

“These three days have really been eye opening and challenging for me. During my experiences [working in South Africa] I was confronted with poverty and hunger everyday and it became a part of my everyday life. Therefore I was sensitive to it, it was real for me. I had an urgency in my heart that said this must end now! But I have been home in the States for almost a year now and only during this fast did I realize how far from my heart the poor and the hungry have actually become recently. Sadly, ‘the children of South Africa’ and ‘the poor’ have become more of just words I say than actual people with that all-too-recognizable longing in their eyes who are captive to hunger pangs, fatigue, inability to concentrate and the other consequences of hunger. They have become a group of people I reference in my mind instead of individuals who have captured my heart. This fast has caused me to remember their faces and the sound of their laughter and the love that pours forth from their hugs. Its also caused me to remember the desperate look on their faces each time I brought bread for them, the conversations about when the last time they had a meal was, and visiting their homes (usually tiny tin shacks) and staring at the empty cupoards and once again it has broken my heart. As I look over at the white tasteless goo that my tongue is so adamantly protesting against I think of my little precious ones in SA and remember them joyfully stuffing pap, or bread, or fruit or whatever I brought them into their mouths, down their throats, and quickly into their empty tummies. The thought about whether or not this is what they wanted to eat wasn’t even a question. The simple fact was they were hungry so they ate what was there, and they did so thankfully and joyfully.

I pray that memory never becomes filed away in my brain in the category of “things I just don’t think about” again. I pray that even tomorrow morning when I wake up and open my cupboard and choose out of my abundance which things I want to eat for breakfast that my heart stays where it is now- with my children, with all the children in South Africa and the nations of the world where the Pap and Porridge Fast is an everyday reality instead of a three day venture. I pray that my attitude towards food remains a thankful one instead of one of complacency and lack of appreciation. I want to be more like my children- joyful and overflowing with love even in the seemingly most hopeless situations.”

Contact [email protected]