NEWHAM charities Bonny Downs Community Association, The Magpie Project and The Renewal Programme have announced a new partnership to help vulnerable neighbours in need during the Coronavirus crisis.

The three charities have set up three donation hubs in Forest Gate, East Ham and Manor Park where local residents can donate urgently needed items. The charities will use these to make up relief packs and distribute them to vulnerable neighbours, including older people and young families.

The charities are asking that people able to go shopping purchase non-perishable foods including tinned foods (such as meat, tuna, soup, rice pudding and fruit and vegetables), jars of pasta sauce and jam, dried foods (including pasta, biscuits and coffee), large-size nappies, sanitary towels, soap, bleach, Milton tablets, washing-up liquid, washing powder and toothpaste.

Residents are invited to drop their donations of essentials to either:

  • The FOREST GATE Hub at Forest Lane Lodge, E7 9DE on Mondays and Wednesdays 10am to 2pm
  • The EAST HAM Hub at The Well Community Centre, 49 Vicarage Lane, E6 6DQ on Tuesdays and Thursdays 10am to 2pm; or
  • The MANOR PARK Hub at The Renewal Programme, 395 High Street North E12 6PG on Tuesdays 10am to 2pm and Fridays 10am to 2pm.

The charities are also appealing for financial donations to the emergency appeal for people unable to visit the hubs or wishing to help in another way. Donations can be made quickly and securely online at justgiving.com/campaign/NewhamCovid19 and will be split between the three charities.

Chelle Coulton, Chief Executive at Bonny Downs Community Association, said:

“Sadly, panic-buying means many foodbanks are experiencing a drop in donations right now and, as the number of people self-isolating and falling sick increases, we’re expecting demand for emergency support to further increase. However, we know from experience that we have a fantastically supportive community here in Newham! That’s why we’re asking people to give what they can by donating the essentials to our hubs – and we’d very much welcome any financial support that people can give to help our neighbours in need get through the months ahead.”

Jane Williams, Founder and CEO of The Magpie Project, said:

“The Coronavirus is a now crisis for everyone, but it will hit the most vulnerable people in our community hardest. We’re particularly concerned about the needs of young families in temporary accommodation, who are struggling to find the affordable supplies they need in shops. However, a crisis often brings out the best in us and we hope that people will consider supporting our appeal however they can, to help us give them the relief packs they need!”

Peter Laing, Chief Executive of The Renewal Programme, said:

“The sad truth is that too many people in Newham were already struggling before Coronavirus struck and now many more will go without even the basics without additional support. The road ahead looks really bleak right now for many of our service users, but giving even a small amount of food, household essentials or money will go a long way in helping them through this emergency.”