Barakah Food Aid is a community initiative based in Manchester and has been established as a collective for around four years. They were established to meet the growing need for assistance of people who are struggling to feed themselves and their families. In 2015 there are lots of children who are going to bed hungry and going to school with no breakfast. There are parents who are skipping meals so that their children can eat instead. There are adults who have to make a choice between keeping warm and eating. This is an unfortunate reality in Manchester and lots of other cities and towns all across the UK. The figures for the amount of people living below the povery line makes for shocking reading. Manzoor and his family saw this desperate need in their local area and Barakah Food Aid was sadly born.
Food and toiletries are donated to Barakah Food Aid by members of the local community (including induviduals, schools and small businesses) and then they are sorted and kept in a rent free storage area ready for distribution. Parcels of essentials (pasta, rice, tinned meat and fish, soap, toothpaste etc) are then packaged up by volunteers. Parcels are compiled taking into account the number/age of children in the family and any specific dietary requirements. Fresh bread, milk, cheese and fruit bought in local shops (for a generously discounted price) is then added to the parcel and delivered to the families home address every Sunday.
People in need are personally referred to Barakah Food Aid by individuals or organisations such as the local council, police or social services. There are no forms to fill in or hoops to jump through; anyone in serious need can receive a food parcel. At any one time Barakah Food Aid is assisting between 10 to 25 families and induviduals each and every week, 365 days a year. At Christmas time Barakah Food Aid provided EVERYTHING needed for a lovely Christmas, including decorations, turkey and all the trimmings.
Barakah Food Aid also cook and distribute freshly prepared meals for homeless people on a Thursday in Manchester City Centre. All of this is achieved with the help of volunteers who give their time to this cause week in, week out.
Barakah Food Aid receive no official funding and rely on donations from the local community. They amazingly have no overheads, wages or any other related costs and they have 100% donation policy so that ALL of the funds they raise and ALL the food they receive can be given to those who need it most in their time of greatest need.