Sikh charity helping people across Sandwell amid coronavirus crisis

A Sikh charity has been working to help people and organisations all over Sandwell through a food bank and other projects.

Project Food Bag has already helped more than 1,000 families across the region
Project Food Bag has already helped more than 1,000 families across the region

Gurdwara Aid is a national charity working to help Gurdwaras and other charities to manage donations and help their communities, working alongside YouTube channel British Punjabi TV.

It is currently running a project called Project Food Bag, which was set up in response to the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting panic-buying at supermarkets.

Balbinder Singh, co-founder of Gurdwara Aid, spoke about how the Government lock down and panic-buying inspired him and his team to act.

He said: "After the panic-buying, people started to put the food in the bin because they didn't check the dates properly.

"We, as a team, started to make up a plan, which began with telling people not to dump the food, but donate to us instead.

"We said that we would then make the parcels and start giving then to needy people."

Since the launch of the project in West Bromwich, more than 1,000 families have been presented with a box of food, containing a large number of items.

These include fresh fruit and vegetables, salt, milk, pasta, sugar and other household items, all of which are available to NHS staff, elderly people and international students.

Laws

It has also given 100 boxes each to Sandwell Central Hospital, New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton and Handsworth school of Association.

Project Food Bag has also worked to help international students who have encountered accommodation issues since the lock down restrictions started.

Sukhvir Singh, a team member of the project, said that a number of students had been threatened with eviction notices by landlords and this had spurred the project team into action to help them.

He said: "We called Bob Singh from Love your Postcode and he gave us 10 houses over here for free.

"This has allowed 40 to 50 students to stay in the area for free until the end of the restrictions.

"We also put him live on the YouTube channel so he could talk about the laws and other information if a landlord is troubling you and what you can do."

To find out more about the project, go to https://www.gurdwaraaid.com/index.php/project-food-bag/

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