West partner with Barakah Food Aid

West Didsbury & Chorlton are happy to announce a new link up with Barakah Food Aid, which will see the latter take up Brookburn Road as its permanent home. Having worked together on events in the past, this move is a solidification of the bond between our two organisations – and we hope that, in this alliance, we can further help our local community.

Barakah Food Aid was been set up to help those in need of food in our local communities. Based in South Manchester but willing to assist wherever they can, Barakah provides food parcels to people who are suffering food poverty. Sadly, the number of people in need of this assistance: only a decade or so ago food banks were used by a tiny minority of people (Trussell Trust, a nationwide foodbank, estimate they distributed around 20,000 parcels in total during 2008/09), whereas now they are a necessity for a notable percentage of the population and a part of every day life for many (for their latest statistics, Trussell Trust gave out 1,400,000 parcels in 2017/18 – and that is only for their organisation). That they are a required part of our society is a damning indictment on those that have systematically stripped away the safety nets that once stopped this hardship. Service users come from every strata of society: those out of work, and those in full time employment; people living alone and families; the young and the old. That our club can assist in some small way in alleviating any of this hardship should make every supporter proud, but that food banks are a reality in the fifth largest economy in the world speaks to how cruel this society can be.

Our link with Barakah has seen them take up residence in one of our shipping containers, in which they will stock the non-perishable food items, toiletries, and other essentials that form their emergency packages. The container, which was previously used as storage for the club, has been refitted by Barakah and their volunteers, and will remain as the centre of their aid operations. Residing on club premises, this means we will now be able to accept donations at all home fixtures – any supporters wanting to make a contribution are free to do so by taking them to our bar. In addition, Barakah Food Aid will be our official cause for our forthcoming Christmas Miracle game (scheduled for the visit of Hanley Town on December 8). This is the fixture in which fans traditionally bring a bag of donations for a local cause in exchange for something: in the past, this has ranged from free entry to the game through to a free drink from our friends at The Beagle. Further information on this will be forthcoming in the next few weeks.

If you or anyone you know is experiencing food poverty and is in need of a food parcel, contact Barakah Food Aid on 07506 527 523, or via their social media channels at https://www.facebook.com/BarakahFoodAid/ or https://twitter.com/barakahfoodaid.

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