| 16 April 2020
Summary: In this unprecedented national crisis, Metropolitan Thames Valley (MTVH) has partnered with The Chalkhill Community Trust Fund (CCTF) and Asda in Wembley, north-west London, to reach out to some of its most at-risk residents in the area with free essential food parcels and vouchers.
CCTF serves the community of the Chalkhill estate, which is managed by MTVH, by funding projects that enhance the social, sporting, welfare, health or educational wellbeing of residents. It also manages a welfare fund for individuals who require urgent or unexpected financial support they are not able to access anywhere else.
“Providing financial support to help Chalkhill’s most vulnerable residents at this extraordinary time made perfect sense and dovetailed with what MTVH was already doing,” said Vivienne McKoy-Salt, Chair of the CCTF.
CCTF provided grant funding of £50 to each household identified by MTVH’s Housing Management team and the Chalkhill Residents’ Association.
50 Asda food parcels and gift vouchers were collected by residents from the Chalkhill Community Centre – with parcels also delivered directly to self-isolating residents or those unable to leave their homes. Colleagues at Asda filled each bag with essential items, including food and hand wash.
Jahanara Rajkoomar, Director of Community Investment at MTVH, added: “In good times and in bad, MTVH always considers what at-risk residents need to be healthy and happy in their homes. But, we can’t do it alone, we work with colleagues and with external partners. This has been an example of how we have collaborated with others in the community to rapidly bring relief to those who need help the most.”
Resident Voice Co-ordinator with MTVH’s Community Investment team, Natalie Beccles, said: “We have worked to put together a list of residents who may be at risk and have contacted each one to assess their needs.”
Natalie was instrumental in approaching, and establishing a good relationship with Lee Randall, the Manager of Asda, Wembley.
Lee said: “Giving local support is what is needed right now, so we’re more than happy to join in and help do our bit. We’re part of the community. In the past we’ve worked with the Chalkhill Community Centre assisting with activities and this has helped bridge the gap between a large supermarket and the local community. As long as we have helped to make people’s lives a little easier, we are pleased.”
Natalie added: “It was so heart-warming and humbling to see residents’ reactions. Some of the most at-risk even refused parcels and vouchers and suggested that we give them to others in the community. That is what true community spirit is all about.”