GIFT’s increasing requests for Food Support! Covid- one year on...24/03/21
GIFT volunteers have been extremely busy the past few weeks packing and delivering thousands of pounds worth of Kosher for Pesach food that is being distributed to many hundreds of families supported by GIFT in the run up to the festival. GIFT has seen a 35% increase in referrals over the past year and numbers have shot up in the weeks prior to Pesach.
Yasmine Ittach, GIFT’s Family Liaison told us “ During this latest lockdown, we have received an unprecedented rise in the number of requests from families for food parcels. I have been both humbled and saddened by the stories of struggles and the profound impact the Pandemic has had across the cross-sections of our Community, which has led to the increase in the number of families we are helping. Some of the families who have reached out are professionals whose businesses have disintegrated and who find themselves on Universal Credit and asking for food parcels for the first time ever. Others include families where one or both of a couple have been made redundant, and they suddenly find themselves in the unfamiliar position of struggling to pay the bills/rent/mortgage. Yet others are parents who feel devastated and ashamed that they are having to ask for help with food to feed their children. Finally, there are elderly, vulnerable or shielding individuals who no longer have a support network to rely on and feel isolated. What binds all these families is the deep appreciation for what many of them describe as a lifeline that they have been given to get through this challenging time. It makes our work so much more meaningful, knowing that what we do is making even a small difference.”
In addition to food support packages, GIFT is providing catered Passover meals to its most vulnerable service users generously sponsored by the Magen Avot Community and generous philanthropists in the community.
Chaya Langerman explains - “Magen Avot is proud to join GIFT in ensuring that people struggling will have cooked food on their table this Pesach. We are extremely grateful for all the donations been received towards that cause, and are still appealing for funds to make this happen.”
Jonathan’s wife tragically died during Covid. He has never had to cook for himself or the children and he is now having to learn.
“I truly have no words to express the kindness and generosity GIFT has shown us. We are fortunate to have never needed that service but when my wife passed away during Covid and we were suddenly left without her; I couldn’t even cook for the family, let alone anything else. - my wife did everything in the home. GIFT took us under their wing, sending soups and meals and organising after school help and online tutors for the children. Phones calls of support and also teaching me how to cook, so I can try and survive without them going forward. This has been a very heartbreaking and scary journey, but thanks to GIFT, they were the angel by out side and still are.”
To help provide Pesach meals for Jonathan & his family and hundreds of other families struggling during this time, visit jgift.org/pesach
Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility