Two hundred scarves and beanies have been donated to the needy in Cape Town to help them stay warm this winter. Charity organisation, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day, distributes thousands of scarves in the country annually through its Secret Scarf Mission programme.

This is in recognition of doing good for others in July, which has been declared a Mandela month.

Scarves were hung from trees and home yards in Lavender Hill on the Cape Flats. Passers-by were free to choose whichever one tickled their fancy.

With the winter chill having already set in, in Cape Town, ambassador for the 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day initiative, Sandi King says it’s about spreading warmth and love.

“Together in Cape Town, we made 200 scarves – all handmade and crotchet and we chose Lavender Hill because it’s right here on the Cape Flats, and there’s so much need here and people are so appreciative,” says King.

The initiative is now in its 7th year.  The theme for this year is “I’m not lost. You may take me home.”

Ruth Elly of the project says the quality is improving every year.

“What is heartwarming is that when people see these scarves they come to you and say, ‘how much?’ And I say, ‘you can have. It’s free.'”

This year the scarves are accompanied by a hot meal, also free.

Project Lockdown Feeding Scheme, Pastor Ivan Jones says, “We feed around about 300 kids everyday. We prepare a delicious cooked meal, an orange, and lollypop.”

And the community appreciates the initiative.

“I say thank you very much for the scarves and the food that you give to the children. I appreciate it.”

The initiative has now blossomed into a worldwide movement with knitting groups in countries like America and India. Handed out to those in need, the project puts into action Madiba’s words, “It’s now in your hands.”