Coronavirus: Leigh Park food bank puts out urgent plea for support as food stocks are running low

A FOOD bank helping to serve the community has put out an urgent plea to help ‘army of angels’ after being hit hard by coronavirus-related food shortages.
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Hardworking volunteers at FoodBank Po9, which serves families in Leigh Park, have announced they are struggling more than usual with putting together food parcels and need more people to help out at this time.

Organiser Darren Mckenna said: ‘FoodBank Po9 has always offered a unique service in the community delivering support to those most in need, without need for referral and delivered straight to your door.

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‘We are run and funded directly by the community, which means food, time and energy are 100 per cent given voluntarily by the army of angels we have here in the Po9.’

FoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers to help look after the Leigh Park community.
Picture : Habibur RahmanFoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers to help look after the Leigh Park community.
Picture : Habibur Rahman
FoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers to help look after the Leigh Park community. Picture : Habibur Rahman
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More volunteers are being recruited so they can help as many people as possible, but organisers have also asked for help from anyone who is able to donate food, household essentials or money to help with fuel costs.

Darren added: ‘We have been experiencing high demand for a while but as I’m sure you can appreciate right now we are under a lot of pressure.

‘We will do our best to continue to help everyone but could we all try to act responsibly as resources are scarce for all. Please don’t hesitate to ask if you know if someone with genuine need however.’

FoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers. Pictured: organiser Darren MckennaFoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers. Pictured: organiser Darren Mckenna
FoodBank Po9 has put out an urgent plea for donations and volunteers. Pictured: organiser Darren Mckenna
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Volunteers will be able to help in many ways including receiving food donations from people, storing ready made food parcels to be collected or delivering food parcels to members of the community if possible.

People in need do not require a referral to be supported by the FoodBank, which is there to help anyone in the community who may be struggling or need some extra support.

Darren said: ‘We are limiting social interaction in line with government recommendations but if you would like to donate directly please come to the Leigh Park Community Centre or get in touch through our Facebook page, FoodBank Po9.

‘Thank you for your continued support Leigh Park, it pays to care.’

Coronavirus: the facts

What is coronavirus?

Covid-19 is a respiratory illness that can affect lungs and airways. It is caused by a virus called coronavirus.

What caused coronavirus?

The outbreak started in Wuhan in China in December 2019 and it is thought that the virus, like others of its kind, has come from animals.

How is it spread?

As this is such a new illness, experts still aren’t sure how it is spread. But similar viruses are spread in cough droplets. Therefore covering your nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing, and disposing of used tissues straight away is advised. Viruses like coronavirus cannot live outside the body for very long.

What are the symptoms?

The NHS states that the symptoms are: a dry cough, high temperature and shortness of breath - but these symptoms do not necessarily mean you have the illness. Look out for flu-like symptoms, such as aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose and a sore throat. It’s important to remember that some people may become infected but won’t develop any symptoms or feel unwell.

What precautions can be taken?

Washing your hands with soap and water thoroughly. The NHS also advises to cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze; put used tissues in the bin immediately and try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell. Also avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth unless your hands are clean.

Sources: World Health Organisation and NHS