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North London charity helps Woodberry Down residents struggling during Covid-19 pandemic

PUBLISHED: 13:54 09 June 2020 | UPDATED: 13:55 09 June 2020

A volunteer standing outside the emergency food hub in Woodberry Down. Picture: Manor House Development Trust

A volunteer standing outside the emergency food hub in Woodberry Down. Picture: Manor House Development Trust

Manor House Development Trust

A North London charity is concerned about job losses and an increased need for emergency food services long after the coronavirus crisis is over.

Volunteers hard at work getting meals out to residents of Woodberry Down Estate. Picture: Manor House Development TrustVolunteers hard at work getting meals out to residents of Woodberry Down Estate. Picture: Manor House Development Trust

Community-led charity Manor House Development Trust (MHDT) fears its emergency food service Skyline Emergency Food Hub may be negatively impacted as lockdown eases and people return to “normality”.

MHDT and property developer Berkley Homes launched the food hub in April to feed over 500 residents living on Woodberry Down Estate in Woodberry Down - one of the most deprived wards in Hackney.

READ MORE: Revealed: Deprivation levels in Hackney ranked by postcode

A spokesperson for MHDT said: “As much as we all want our routines to go back to a new normal, we anticipate that the effect, long after the virus has subsided, will be enormous.

Soups ready to be distributed to Woodberry Down residents. Picture: Manor House Development TrustSoups ready to be distributed to Woodberry Down residents. Picture: Manor House Development Trust

“Many livelihoods have already been greatly impacted by Covid-19, which leaves families at risk of food poverty for the unforeseeable future. Which is why we can’t stress enough how important it is that this service continues long after lockdown is eased.”

Volunteers and local organisations have been running the service for residents like Mauve and Chris who requested their last names not be used in this article.

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Mauve has four children and has received hot meals since the service launched.

A volunteer coordinator at Skyline Emergency Food Hub. Picture: Manor House Development TrustA volunteer coordinator at Skyline Emergency Food Hub. Picture: Manor House Development Trust

She told the Gazette: “Without help from the food deliveries, I would be struggling. I did break down and thought: ‘how am I going to cope?’

“So, receiving meals is one less thing to worry about. The kids enjoy the meals. I’m so happy to receive it.”

Chris, another meal recipient, said how the meals helped ease financial pressures faced during the pandemic.

“It really helps me,” she said.

“It means I’m able to pay most of the bills. It’s one less thing to worry about. The kids are home twenty-four seven , whereas normally I’d just be feeding them breakfast and dinner. The deliveries with lunch and snacks fill that gap.”

MHDT’s crowdfunding page has reached over £3,500 in donations so far.

To donate visit MHDT’s JustGiving page by clicking here.

Interested in volunteering? Email Skyline Emergency Food hub at volunteer@mhdt.org.uk


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