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Coronavirus: Charity appeals for help feeding community at north London foodbank

PUBLISHED: 10:49 01 April 2020 | UPDATED: 10:49 01 April 2020

Staff from Greens of Highgate and Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation volunteers with Juliet Stevenson to support a local food bank. Picture: Ruth Corney / Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation

Staff from Greens of Highgate and Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation volunteers with Juliet Stevenson to support a local food bank. Picture: Ruth Corney / Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation

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A north London charity is appealing for help supplying food to its partner foodbank, which is under pressure amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Highgate charity the Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation (AWTF) has been rallying the community to support vulnerable families by delivering food to the food bank run from the Ringcross Community Centre in Holloway for two years.

The AWTF, launched in memory of Channing schoolgirl Alexandra Wylie who died in 2010 – aged just 17 – of a rare form of cancer works with schools, shops and communtiy groups to get food to the centre.

But during lockdown sourcing enough food has become difficult.

Alexandra’s mum Lindsey, who runs the charity, told this newspaper the initiative had “worked very well” up to now, but that she was concerned the charities were struggling to cope.

Lindsey said: “On Monday, the number of people coming to the food bank jumped from the usual 15 to over 50. We had calls and referrals from people who are sick or self isolating and had had no food in the house all weekend. Many of these calls came from mothers with children in the home.

“At the moment, we have enough food for the next four days, if the numbers don’t jump up again.”

With coronavirus putting added pressure on the local businesses like Greens of Highgate who help source fresh food for the foodbank, and the schools the AWTF relies on for non-perishable donations shut, Lindsey is concerned.

She said: “I am worried that we are not going to be able to feed existing clients let alone help all those who will be joining the food bank queue.”

The Ringcross Community Centre where the food parcels are handed out is run by the Pilion Trust.

In addition to food, the charities are appealing for help in a number of ways. The first is for people who can offer financial help for those struggling to pay for electric metres. They are also looking for people who can help advise those in perilous housing situations.

To donate or find out more information visit awtf.org or contact Lindsey Wylie on 07515357019 or alliesfoundation@gmail.com

Non-perishable food can be donated in pink bins outside Greens of Highgate stores in Muswell Hill and Highgate.


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