The foodbank has been a long running service of Hamara, supporting service users across all projects with a culturally appropriate food parcels when they have found themselves in crisis.
This year has seen huge growth for the Foodbank due to so many people being affected by Covid 19. With many of the community living inter-generationally, families had more people at home all day to feed. And with many unable to work from home and a rise in unemployment, families once thriving have found themselves in need of a food bank for the first time.
This crisis pushed Hamara to open our doors 5 days a week, including holidays, to ensure no one in the community went hungry. From the early part of the year, we were regularly supporting around 20 families with a food parcel, in December the number of families rose to over 300.
Our staff work hard to ensure that nobody is left without something to enjoy, for those who have limited access to kitchen supplies and appliances our service users are offered a hot meal instead, this ensures that they have something to enjoy.
Our cultural food bank started of small and we are now catering towards 30 plus organisations around the Leeds area; cultural foodbank has been catering towards the African, Caribbean and Nigerian communities specifically with plantain and yam as they are trying to be more inclusive in the palettes they provide. This is growing need as more community organisations recognise the importance of offering culturally appropriate food to those are unable to do so themselves.
The Hamara kitchen, based on site at Hamara, has supported those without cooking facilities, older people, those in the shielding category, those in fuel poverty and the homeless community by lovingly preparing over 10,000 nutritious hot meals to be distributed.
Volunteers have played a key part in our successes, both assisting in the foodbank creating the parcels and in delivering them out to the local community in LS11 and LS10.
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