A HUGE thank you to everyone who donated to our BIG GIVE Christmas Challenge campaign last week. So proud and pleased to confirm that you all helped us smash our target of £6,000. With the match and gift aid from our amazing supporter the Childhood Trust, You helped us raise £9,936. Incredible and so much needed by the children of asylum seeker, refugee and migrant families we are supporting through the tough times of COVID. Thank you again, and a safe, happy festive season to you all.
Helen, Food Bank Manager.
“My kids smile on a Saturday when they hear the doorbell. They say, ‘mummy that’s our food for the week.’ Thank you so much for making my kids happy.”
Lockdowns and restrictions have placed an unbelievable amount of stress and worry on the vulnerable, marginalised migrant, refugee, and asylum seeking families that AFRIL supports. Delays in the immigration system, the closure of support agencies such as churches, informal work falling through, and friends unwilling to host families due to risk of infection are just some of the additional problems that our families face this winter. Some of our families have no access to financial support from the government; others receive just £37 per person per week. Access to affordable good food, toiletries, sanitary products and clothing is more difficult than ever. Many of our families are finding this winter extremely challenging, and are suffering from poor physical and emotional health.
The costs of running the foodbank have also increased: we receive fewer donations of food, meaning that we need to buy more in. We also need to pay for petrol to make sure that deliveries reach their destination.
This winter, you can make a difference – every donation matched!
AFRIL is taking part in the BIG GIVE Christmas Challenge online campaign from 12 noon Tuesday 1st – 12 noon Tuesday 8th December. Having already secured £3,000 from generous pledgers earlier in the year, we now want to match this through donations to bring some joy to our families this winter.
Our regular supporter, the Children’s Trust will be matching our donations 100%.
One donation – twice the impact
AFRIL’s foodbank is currently supporting 35 families with 67 dependents. Some of these families are outside the range of our delivery area, and we support them with grants. However, each week we support up to 31 families with deliveries of food, household goods, toiletries, sanitary products and baby goods, delivered to their door by our team of volunteer drivers and cyclists.
AFRIL does more than just provide food and grants. We check in regularly over the phone with clients, making sure that they are well, and working with our Advice and Advocacy Service, supplementary school, and partner organisations to meet practical and emotional needs. We have a range of wellbeing activities for clients, to reduce isolation and facilitate improved emotional health, including an art @ home group, sewing crafts class, a shared reading group and fun activities for parents of early years.
If you have not pledged already, please consider a donation to kick off the festive period. The minimum online donation is £5. Individuals, companies, and community groups can donate via this the link below.
“There are people who care for my family unconditionally” – Sarah
Our foodbank is a lifeline to the families we support. Beyond providing crucial food and other supplies, we enable families to improve their wellbeing. 70% of families we support said that attending the foodbank had helped them to make more friends; 66% said that it helped them to feel less anxious; 72% said they felt more confident as a result of engaging with the foodbank.
The Christmas Challenge (the UK’s biggest online match funding campaign) helps UK-registered charities to raise funds for their projects by doubling donations when the campaign goes live on 1st December. You can find full details of the Christmas Challenge, and how your pledge will enable us to be part of the UK’s largest Matched Funding Challenge, on theBigGive.org.uk.
How does it work?
The matching pots used to double donations for charities taking part in the Christmas Challenge are made up of a combination of funds. These are funds sourced by the charity (‘Pledges’) and funds sourced by the Big Give (‘Champions’) which match our funds raised 100%.
Please note that if you pledged to the campaign earlier in the year, you will not be able to make an online donation to us in December because your pledge will be used to match these donations.