Sikh communities in Bradford have been filling local food banks to bursting point this week, after they collected over 48 food parcels for one of the city’s longest running collections.
As foodbank usage continues to rise to an all time high across the UK, the need to stock-up these ‘lifesaving projects’ grows in importance every year.
In Bradford, the Metropolitan Foodbank, located at St Mary’s Church on East Parade, has seen its service users grow to ten-times the amount today compared to the figure from just a decade ago.
After a plea for help over the winter months, one Bradford woman, Daljit Kaur, took it upon herself to organise a food collection drive on behalf of the Sikh community, with the help of local temples.
Food donation collection points were found at both the Singh Sabha Gurdwara and Guru Nanak Gurdwara temples in Bradford throughout the past week as goods were piled high in the places of worship.
Eventually donating just short of 50 food parcels and hundreds of pounds, Daljit said this year’s appeal was one of the most successful yet.
“We encouraged people to donate on a weekly basis. We wanted to do a food drive where people brought in food and it was quite a success,” she said.
“The entire food donation was from the whole of the Bradford Sikh community but those temples were the drop off points.”
She continued: “We also managed to collect over £300 in donations and the overall response was overwhelming.
“At this time of the year, it’s when people need support the most because it’s so cold out there. The team at the foodbank were very grateful. The children were also fantastic and they did so well. It was a real community effort.”
It is not the first time members of the Sikh community have come together to support the local foodbank.
Just last month, worshippers at both gurdwaras celebrated Guru Nanak's Gurpurab’s birthday by donating a large bounty of goods to the collection team.
Frances Atkins, from the foodbank, thanked the community for their continued support.
“Thank you so much to everyone who helped out this year,” she said. “What a terrific collection of food and money.
“Everyone was so kind and welcoming and this donation will help so many people.”