There are some fantastic groups working in Thamesmead, making the area a better place to live, work and go to school.
Trust Thamesmead; Thamesmead's leading community development agency and registered charity works endlessly with these groups, one of which is the Thamesmead Food Bank, who provide community members in temporary crisis, with three days of non perishable foods as well as general support and signposting for further on-going assistance.
Made up of The Father's House, Emmanuel Baptist Church, Thamesmead Christian Life Centre, KICC Thamesmead and St Paul's Church, the Thamesmead Food Bank first formed in February 2009, when it came to the attention of local church leaders that there is an issue of a number of households finding it difficult in being able to afford food.
Community outreach led by The Father's House, St Paul's Church and Emmanuel Baptist Church have provided more than 200 families with food in the last 18 months and that's not including the Christmas hampers distributed in 2009; which saw 574 families benefiting from the 10 tonnes of food donated by His Church charity.
“We have seen our plight grow over the last 18 months,” said Pastor Bunmi adding “And have just been awarded a £10,000 grant by the Church Urban Fund, to appoint a part time admin/project worker who will work with different organisations in Thamesmead and spread the word and encourage health workers, church leaders and others, so they are aware of the Thamesmead Food Bank and what we are about.”
Trust Thamesmead's Central Thamesmead Community Development Officer, Roz Williams said: “The project aims to consolidate and develop the programme, to introduce a common set of documentation for recording and monitoring the service and to examples the distribution and collection points by working service providers, schools and other faith and community groups.
“We have already held one very successful donation day in Thamesmead Town Centre, where members of the Food Bank and Trust Thamesmead encouraged residents to buy one extra item during their food shop; which was very successful with food items donated weighing 86.35kg, as well as being a good opportunity to raise the profile and availability of the Food Bank.”
Emmanuel Baptist Church and pre-school, Business Academy Bexley and individuals have also been collecting food, mainly via their Harvest Festivals, on behalf of the Food Bank. With 876.95kg (that's over 138 stone!) worth of food being donated so far.