Catriona, Service Manager at Hope Kitchen in Oban told us:
“We provide people with all the food and toiletries they need for a week. As far as possible we individualise the packs taking into account dietary needs as well as the ages of any children. We like to give people little extras. We often are donated handmade items like teddies or brand-new activity packs that go in as well.
As we are part of the fair share and neighbourly scheme, we also get donations from the supermarkets which includes fresh flowers. These are especially appreciated by some of our older recipients. A local butcher is donating meat and we are also getting weekly donations from a restaurant of fresh fruit and vegetables so the packs have a real variety of quality items. We provide toiletries, sanitary items, nappies and dog food. We have just received 1000 bars of soap which will help people to keep washing their hands. We have a group of volunteers who then deliver the parcels out in the community.
The area we cover is quite large. The furthest main land family is an hour away. One of the local fire service workers lives in the village so picks up on his way home from a shift in Oban. Every fortnight we load 2 weeks worth of food onto the Mull ferry and volunteers who live on Mull then distribute the food. Their community has been particularly badly affected as they are really dependent on the tourist trade and they don’t have access to any low-cost supermarkets. When people ring to request food it is a really good opportunity to hear people’s stories which can be very harrowing as people are experiencing grief, loss, poverty, guilt, shame and fear. We provide a listening ear and we can also provide ongoing advice and signposting make sure that people are accessing all the help they can get.
We have been overwhelmed by the support and generosity of our community the sacrificial giving and the desire of everyone to make sure that no-one is left out.”
Click on the next page below to find out how Tamfourhill Community Hall rallied around their community.