Souper Troopers celebrate anniversary
HUNDREDS of homeless people from Cape Town descended on the Service Dining Rooms in Canterbury Street for the monthly #SouperTrooper Social.
But, this time, things were a little different.
The Souper Troopers, a group of Capetonians who go out of their way to make the homeless feel special by hosting socials once a month, celebrated their second anniversary yesterday.
Founding member Kerry Hoffman was inspired by the turnout for the celebration of human dignity.
“I started this business with helping one person and ended up with about 150 people for the soup kitchen. This to me created a rewarding and exciting feeling of how far I have come.”
The event also serves as a party for homeless people who celebrated birthdays this month, complete with the singing of Happy Birthday and cakes from Charly’s Bakery.
One of the Souper Trooper volunteers, Samantha Grass, also celebrated her 27th birthday recently. Instead of asking her family for gifts, she urged them to give her donations to the homeless.
“I came across Danny Oosthuisen’s story in the Cape Argus’ #TheDignityProject, and something in that touched me.
“I was inspired and thought to myself: ‘I can do something to help such people’, so I started by creating an event on Facebook as a platform for my birthday donations, to contribute to the Souper Troopers project.”
She publicised the event on Facebook, inviting her friends via Sam’s Birthday Wish list to donate towards the project.
She said her sister, Michelle Grass, has been supportive. “Michelle is very connected so she got donations from Woolworths food market and contributed that to the people.”
What made the celebration more poignant for the Grass sisters was that 50 years ago, their father, Stanford Grass, worked as a volunteer on a feeding scheme in the same building.
Stanford was also at the party yesterday: “It is indeed a huge warm feeling for me to be here, it feels unbelievable.
“I cannot believe that I was in this very same building when I was young, and back then it was called the Shoopies,” he said.
Stanford said he was thankful to his wife for reminding him about the event as they drove past Canterbury Street yesterday.
While he was not aware of the Souper Troopers hosting their event at the Service Dining Rooms, he was “beyond happy” that the good work was continuing.
A highlights of the event was when Mitchells Plain singing sensation Nathan Kennedy entertained the crowd with a rendition of the Amy Winehouse hit, Valerie, as well as his own compositions.