Responding to a direct instruction from the Sufi teacher, in Turkey, who first directed Dr Sooliman to establish Gift of the Givers, we initiated a Feeding Scheme at our offices in 1997.
The Sufi teacher's instruction was very clear, saying 'feed hungry people as this is a very blessed and noble act.'
We established the scheme, feeding the hungry who came to us randomly from the streets and, over time, extended this vital service to include 120 needy pre-primary schools.
Since those early days the pattern of our Cooked Meal interventions have changed dramatically.
Cooked meals were identified as a crucial disaster intervention and are, accordingly, routinely operated anywhere from three days to three weeks. In some countries where people simply lack the resources or equipment to cook for themselves - such as in Syria and Yemen - our cooked meal schemes provide a major source of quality nutrition.
A further innovation has been the feeding of certain university students, cooking meals ourselves or providing these needy young people with ingredients for mass cooking.
In the field of health-care, we have adopted the Helen Joseph Hospital in terms of providing a number of patients with cooked meals three times a day. The number of patients accommodated in this project varies on a daily basis.
We also operate mobile kitchens and feeding schemes, which afford us an excellent means to interact with community members at the time of establishing new bases. Whilst people come to collect food, we have the opportunity to engage and interact with them, enabling us to better understanding community needs and, therefore, plan for longer-term interventions.