Supporting local people with food
Would you like to help neighbours experiencing difficulties during these very challenging times?
Below are three great local food initiatives which support neighbours in the Queens Park, Kensal & Brondesbury areas without any form-filling, 'referral' process.
All urgently need pasta, rice, tinned tomatoes, tuna, fruit, veg to get to families and households.
Home pick-up of donations is possible via firstname.lastname@example.org and there are also drop-off points at the initiatives on Mondays (Gift Your Neighbour), Weds (Granville Community Kitchen), Thurs (Laurence's Larder) and Fridays (Granville Community Kitchen) or anytime at Cuore Italian Deli (Sidmouth Rd).
Thanks to Salusbury World, financial donations to Gift Your Neighbour can be boosted by 25% Gift Aid (so we can purchase even more food at low prices) at https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/GiftYourNeighbour
GIFT YOUR NEIGHBOUR
Monday - food delivered to families & households
Volunteers deliver donated food, topped up with fruit and veg, to allow households within half a mile of Queens Park to cook/eat a healthy meal.
Food donations can be picked-up from your home, at the drop-off points on the chart below, or you can financially donate with a 25% Gift Aid boost at bit.ly/GiftYourNeighbour.
GRANVILLE COMMUNITY KITCHEN
Weds & Friday - walk-up collection, delivery by arrangement if disabled, elderly or unable to collect
GCK is a community-led food project which empowers our community through food. Based in Carlton Vale serving across several Brent wards. Food donations can be picked-up or dropped off as per the chart below.
Request food at email@example.com or via 07952 616352
The team have also just introduced their Good Food Box scheme to help encourage food sustainability and affordable access to organically grown & culturally appropriate foods. www.granvillecommunitykitchen.org.uk
Thurs - food available on a 'walk-up' basis (no appointment)
The Larder has long provided a warm welcome, including hot food and showers/clothes. Covid has temporarily restricted offerings to walk-up food for takeway on Thursdays (10-1pm) - no appointment necessary.
Food donations can be dropped off on a Thursday at St Laurence's (Christchurch Ave) or donations with Gift Aid can be made online at www.laurenceslarder.org.uk
Working as a team
These three initiatives employ no staff, and draw on local volunteers, including from other charities and local mutual aid groups, ensuring all donations go directly to making quality food available.
We work together, with great community-minded businesses like Cuore Deli, & Pelican Fruit & Veg, and we share your food donations to ensure anyone who needs food can access it on Monday, Weds, Thurs and Friday every week.
We are also very grateful to Akoya of Queens Park for providing premises for Gift Your Neighbour to store and distribute food from.
We are also happy to onward deliver to a foodbank 'voucher' service such as Sufra NW London, Brent Foodbank or North Paddington (see links below).
What should I donate?
A golden rule: donate anything you would be prepared to eat yourself!
GREAT items are fruit, veg, pasta, rice, tinned tomatoes, tuna, eggs but everything will get used by someone very grateful! Toiletries and even carrier bags are 'hot' items. Sufra's recommendations here are a good summary that apply to all of us.
Where/when to drop off items? We think it's confusing for people to keep up with different days/times for different projects. And hassle to park etc?
So, to take the hassle away: let us come to you? Request a food donation pick-up via firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know where you'd like the bag to go.
If you don't mind where the items go, we'll work out which project most needs what on a given day.
FOODBANKS IN OUR AREA
There are three main foodbanks serving our area. They differ from Gift Your Neighbour, GCK and Laurence's Larder in that there is a referral process to identify who may be in most need of emergency food.
We help address both the causes and consequences of extreme poverty, homelessness & social isolation across Brent. With your support, we can ensure no-one in our community goes hungry.
All the above food initiatives collaborate as part of the Brent Food Aid Network, a network of agencies, charities and other community organisations working together to ensure that people in urgent food need are supplied and cared for.
Other local options
A number of great food initiatives are available at the 'local' level rather than across wards. For example:
Ashford Place in Cricklewood is currently open to its homeless guests., providing food as well as shelter.
Harlesden Fresh Foodbank on the High St hosted by Fresh Horizons CB in Harlesden are open on Friday. www.harlesdenmutualaid.co.uk details other food options and support in Harlesden, including the great work by its mutual aid team.
Kilburn Street Kitchen provide dinner, hot drinks and friendly chat to anyone who comes to see them on Kilburn High Rd (near Wenzels), 19:15-20.30 every week. These are a small group of local volunteers supported by the StreetsKitchen network, a larger group supplying meals across London.
Sacred Heart Church Parish House (at back of the church) Quex Rd, Kilburn, NW6 4PS Open: Everyday, 10 -4pm No tokens or referrals necessary
The aim of the Sidings Food Hub is to support at least 70 families in the NW6/NW2 area of Camden each Saturday, either collected from Sidings Community Centre or delivered by volunteers to those unable to leave their homes.
Rumi's operates food kitchens in Harlesden and Willesden and during Covid lock-down has been looking for volunteers. Volunteers assist those in need with shopping and collecting groceries and they run a befriending scheme to check on residents' well-being and make phone calls. You can receive food by filling in this online form.
The team accept food donations Monday-Friday from 9am-12pm if you email email@example.com to confirm a delivery slot
The Avenues Youth Project - food
The Avenues Youth Project has provided food for 200 of the hardest hit on Queen’s Park Estate during lockdown, working with North Paddington Foodbank, Westminster Council, Queens Park Community Council, Schools, Queens Park Family Hub to identify need.
The QPG teamed up during lockdown with Ida Restaurant, Sea Shells Fish & Chips Restaurant, and the Felix Project to offer meals to the 'shielded' and elderly around the Kilburn Lane and Avenues area. Initiatives are continuing with more information at: https://www.qpghub.com/
ALSO HELPING US LOCALLY - AND ACROSS LONDON
Brilliant organisations that help supply all the above include The Felix Project, and City Harvest and Fareshare (the UK's national network of charitable food redistributors, made up of 17 independent organisations) who rescue food from the food industry and deliver across London to charities and schools.
The London Mayor is also raising funds for its Kitchen Social programme.
Part of the Felix team is in Park Royal. To volunteer or donate please click here.
To follow on social media: @felixprojectuk