Petrol Attendant birthday cakes
Photo Credit: On File

David Sanei recently turned 42-years-old and decided to give 42 people a filling lunch; he used his birthday to challenge others to donate theirs.


Johannesburg, South Africa (19 November 2020) – Donating your birthday to charity is a big thing these days. It gives one the opportunity to celebrate their own blessings all the while helping others.

As Ronald Raegan once said, “We can’t help everyone, but everyone can help someone” and David chose to make sure that 42 people got a filling lunch on his birthday.

If you grew up in the ’90s, you would have had or at least attended a birthday party at McDonald’s. It was the done thing back then. David took this concept and ordered 42 McDonald’s meals to hand out to 42 people he found wandering the streets or begging for food in honour of his 42nd birthday.

David is challenging people to join his birthday challenge and give out meals that equal your age. Turning 16, you can make 16 sandwiches and cookies for those in need, or you can make up 16 meal packs. It all depends on your budget but give it a try and see what happens.

David’s story reminds us of Sergeant Matome Rathupetsane, who used his 40th to feed 40 families during the lockdown. There are so many inspiring ways to use your birthday to help others.

Shelley Finch – a good friend of Good Things Guy – heard about the challenge and put out a post to remind South Africans that if they want to help vulnerable people then buying takeaways should not be an option at all.

“Please could I ask you all not to spend your money on buying people takeaways? Not only are takeaways expensive, but they are also rarely nutritious and leave people feeling hungry again 10 min later.

This is not a criticism of anyone’s kindness but rather some advice on how your kindness can help make an even bigger difference.”

Finch listed some great options on how you can really make a difference and avoid takeaways!

Go for a quick shop at your local supermarket and buy some of the following:

  • Lucky Star Pilchards (pull tab lid) or similar tinned fish
  • Tinned beans and tinned vegetables (pull tab lid)
  • Instant Oats sachets
  • Yoghurt
  • Cheese
  • Smoked chicken pack or cooked chicken from the deli (not too much!)
  • A loaf of bread and a jar of good quality peanut butter
  • Eggs (take them home, boil them and put them back in the box)
  • Apples, bananas, oranges, grapes, nectarines (any fruit that does take a lot of chopping)
  • Treats can include Ricoffy 3-in-1 sachets, peanuts and raisins, dried fruit (for the sweet tooth)

These are all HIGHLY nutritious food options that don’t need to be cooked. Don’t forget that some folks have pets to take care of too. You can throw in a thermos cup/mug if you like as people can use this to mix their oats/soup/coffee in and they can usually find someone to offer them hot water.

Buy a Shoprite/Checkers voucher either online at Computicket or in-store.

For the virtual vouchers, you will need the person’s cell number. They will receive the voucher by SMS and they can use it in-store. Vouchers bought in-store will be loaded on a card. These vouchers can be used at Shoprite, Checkers and USave stores and can also be used to buy electricity. A R250 voucher can last a family a week if they shop carefully! Buy one by clicking here.

Donate to food programs!

South African charities have become the life-force during the lockdown and hundreds of our readers have been asking where to donate; these are the charities we know of.

We spent many days tracking down all the information you may need to select a charity to support.

Click here to see all the different kinds of charities that are in need of help, you can find them sorted into different categories for ease of reference.

Donate meals that are actually nutritious!

Finch has worked with some amazing companies who have created very low-cost but highly nutritious meals for the low-income community. Some of these include:

  • Nutriwell South Africa offers a Nutrition Pack with contains 1kg fortified mince stew, 1kg thick veggie soup, 1kg porridge and 1kg meal shake (which older people with teeth issues LOVE). Each pack costs R250 each and feeds one person for a month.
    Farida Ryklief and Nana Odumuko can tell you how DELICIOUS the meals are and it is possible to order bulk orders of JUST the soya mince or porridge (which is excellent for crèches and ECD Centre’s)
    Contact: or
  • Mindful Meals offers a range of “just add water” meals packed in 12kg bags which offers 120 meals. Cost is R420 making each meal cost R3.50.
  • Nutritional information is printed on the front of each pack and they have a choice of tomato, chicken or beef casserole and traditional ahkini. Contact:

Finch says she loves both these meal packs because it means people don’t have to eat the same thing over and over again.

“You CAN make an amazing difference in someone’s life by offering them a meal when they are hungry but please do try and provide them with a nutritious meal and choose how you spend your hard-earned money wisely.”

Please take a look at how David spent his birthday below.

Sources: Facebook
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Tyler Leigh Vivier
About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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