Thousands of Christmas meals delivered by Woodberry Down food hub

Frontline workers and Woodberry Down volunteers sort food at The Foodhub

The Hackney Foodhub has delivered more than 15,000 meals to people in the borough - Credit: The Hackney Foodhub

More than 15,000 meals were delivered to struggling Hackney residents, just in time for Christmas.

Both The Hackney Foodhub and Woodberry Aid, an initiative supporting vulnerable people, are staffed by Woodberry Down Estate residents.

Staff and volunteers at The Hackney Foodhub

The Hackney Foodhub was set up earlier this year at the start of the coronavirus pandemic. - Credit: The Hackney Foodhub

Dedicated frontline staff and volunteers have been working week in, week out to support people across the borough.

Mayor of Hackney Phil Glanville said: " The festive period can be extremely challenging for vulnerable people, especially during this pandemic. 

"The generosity and hard work of the Foodhub and Woodberry Aid is inspiring and is making a huge impact to those in the community."

The food hub, which is managed by Manor House Development Trust (MHDT) and supported by Hackney Council and developer Berkeley Homes, started off as a small service at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. 

First its focus was on the estate community but, it quickly grew in size to become Hackney's main emergency food distribution hub. 

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Woodberry Aid was also set up by locals to support families on low income, the isolated, elderly and the homeless, with the delivery of prescription medications and weekly food parcels, tailored to meet cultural and dietary needs. 

A volunteer helps prepare meals for people in Hackney. 

A volunteer helps prepare meals for people in Hackney. - Credit: The Hackney Foodhub

Hackney council and developer of the Woodberry Down Estate regeneration project, Berkeley Homes, recently showed support for the initiative, each promising donations of monthly £1,000 donations for the next six months, to go towards buying food to meet growing demand. 

Every household receiving support from The Foodhub or Woodberry Aid also received a Christmas hamper this year which contained essential food items and festive treats.

Volunteers and staff stood outside The Hackney Foodhub.

Local residents of Woodberry Down estate have volunteered their time to provide thousands of meals for people in Hackney. - Credit: The Hackney Foodhub.

Simon Donovan, Chief Executive of Manor House Development Trust told the Gazette: "The efficiency of the Foodhub and the rate at which we were able to expand is a monumental achievement.

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"It's all down to the amazing people who live in this community, alongside the strength of the regeneration partnership who have been able to respond quickly to put the necessary infrastructure in place to support the Foodhub. 

"There is no way we could have done this without everyone getting involved and playing their part."

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