At a glance


  • Black, asian and minority ethnic groups
  • Children / families
  • Counselling / advice
  • Environment
  • Gardens and parks
  • Local / community
  • Women

Other details

Geographical remit: 


Thatu was set up in 2004 by people in the UK with personal links to South Africa. The founders were inspired by struggling communities striving to develop a better future for themselves in South Africa. Thatu raises funds in the UK to support self help initiatives in poorly resourced communities. We encourage & enable sustainable projects, with a focus on food gardens.


In its first ten years Thatu funded 24 projects involving about 50 schools and communities. Thousands of people have benefited from growing their own food, improving their environment, gaining new skills, confidence and even badly needed income. Thatu and its generous donors have shown that sustainable change can be set in motion through small innovative projects.

Thatu has provided £130,000 for food growing and learning projects into communities to help grow and sustain a movement in food gardening in the most hostile of environments. Even in the barren sands of the Cape Flats vegetable gardens have almost miraculously sprung up and the idea has set seed in many areas from the Touws River and Johannesburg to KwaZulu Natal and Pretoria.

Our current funding is focussed on two organisations that we try to visit at least annually. Our long standing relationship with a non-profit in Capetown has supported a widespread network of trained community leaders and gardening projects in the townships and informal settlements.  We are in our 4th year of support for a community in KwaZulu Natal initially with training for school food gardens and now expanding into support networks for vulnerable children.

Thatu is “virtual organisation” with no fixed office or paid staff and we meet regularly in central London. Nearly all our income goes directly to the projects we fund. So our activities in the UK are concentrated on fundraising and grant distribution. Our monitoring is through regular written reports, Skype conversations and occasional personal visits.

We have a web site and social media accounts and have a regular e-newsletter for our subscribers.

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