FABFAF was initiated by Professor Gerald Pillay, who based the feeding scheme on similar schemes he had come across during a visit to the United States of America. With the backing of Father Les Walker, who was the Rector of St Martin-in-the-Fields at that time, and members of the congregation, the scheme was launched in 1993.  Today, we are privileged that Prof Pillay, Vice Chancellor and Rector of Liverpool Hope University, is our Patron.
St Martin-in-the-Fields (abbreviated to St Martin’s) is the Anglican Parish Church for Irene, a village forming part of Centurion, Gauteng.
FABFAF depends on the support of concerned individuals and organisations for its existence. This support has taken many forms such as providing empty bags, filling bags with groceries, cash donations, transport services and supplying administrative back-up.
In addition to supplying grocery-filled bags to needy families, FABFAF also distributes large numbers of empty bags each year to like-minded organisations. These bags are also filled with groceries and distributed to poor families. In this way, the impact of FABFAF is extended significantly.
The FABFAF scheme is administered by a Management Committee. FABFAF was registered by the Department of Social Development as a Non- Profit Organisation (NPO) in terms of the Nonprofit Organisation Act, 1997 in 2013. It was also registered by the South African Revenue Service (SARS) as a Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) in terms of section 30 (3) of the Income Tax Act No 58 of 1962 (the Act) in 2014.
In addition, the Fill-a-Bag concept has a further national impact through the generosity of NAMPAK SACKS/MPACT PAPER which makes large numbers of bags directly available to charitable organisations throughout South Africa.
Download the full history here
Download a tribute to Ex-Chairperson, Mrs Pam Smith here
Gerald Pillay: "If I hadn't grown up in South Africa, I wouldn't be me. Adversity doesn't generate only hopelessness".
Photograph:Christopher Thomond/Guardian