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Coronavirus: Emergency food distribution centre set up in Havering

PUBLISHED: 10:54 09 April 2020 | UPDATED: 10:54 09 April 2020

Havering Town Hall

Havering Town Hall

Archant

A food distribution centre has been set up in Havering to support the effort to deliver emergency supplies to those in need.

The centre will supply each part of the chain to ensure vital goods are sent to residents in the coming weeks.

The council said there are 3,600 people in the borough at high risk of coronavirus and in self-isolation - 2,000 of those have registered for food support.

It is working in partnership with leisure centre provider SLM, the Trussell Trust foodbanks in Harold Hill and Rainham and Havering Volunteer Centre (HVC) to coordinate and distribute food to people with urgent needs.

Investment of more than £400,000 towards food and household items at the distribution centre has been pledged by the council, as well as £30,000 worth of emergency food towards the HVC’s efforts.

Council leader Damian White said the introduction of the distribution centre will help charities and community organisations scale up their response during the Covid-19 crisis.

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He added: “I am extremely proud of the speed by which the council and our voluntary sector partners have responded to the crisis, setting up a system that will make a significant positive contribution to the way Havering copes with Covid-19.

“The tireless dedication of staff and volunteers to support our most vulnerable residents and the way in which we have been able to coordinate across the public, private and voluntary sectors to identify the challenges we face is truly impressive.

“It makes me, as a Havering resident, feel incredibly inspired and reassured.”

On Tuesday, April 7 180 packages were distributed from the centre while the council’s passenger transport team is now delivering supplies to homes and foodbanks across the borough.

A list of families who need support is also being drawn up by the council, in conjunction with HVC and foodbanks.

More than 1,000 calls have been made to the council’s Covid-19 emergency helpline since it was set up.

Anyone with concerns about their health and wellbeing, or with lack of access to supplies such as food and medicines, are urged to call the Covid-19 helpline on 0800 368 5201 or email covid19support@havering.gov.uk.


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