Her Majesty Sends Her Gratitude to Walthamstow Food Bank

Wednesday 2nd March saw The Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE, who is the personal representative of Queen Elizabeth II, in Greater London, visited the PL84U AL-SUFFA food bank in Walthamstow. The food bank, which is supported by world food brand, Tropical Sun, aims to tackle poverty, cultural deprivation, and isolation.

The cross-community inter-faith initiative, provides hot meals, companionship, food, and clothes to the elderly, homeless, and others in need, from all faiths, beliefs, and backgrounds. Earlier this month, the founder of the East London-based food bank, Saira Begum Mir, received a British Empire Medal for services to the borough having created the initiative in 2013 to help those in need.

  George Phillips (Commercial Director at Wanis
       International Foods)
Farooq Mir with Paul Harrison from Tropical Sun Foods.

Sir Kenneth explained to the gathered volunteers: “I am the Queen’s representative in Greater London, the greatest city on the planet. During the lockdown period when you really rose up to help everybody it was really remarkable. The work that you’re doing, to me, it symbolises so much that’s great about our country.”

The food bank saw demand increase exponentially during the Pandemic, and Sir Kenneth reflected on this: “What was remarkable, absolutely remarkable about the whole covid experience was how communities just came together and helped each other. So, people who didn’t know who their neighbour was around the corner said “That old lady who lives around the corner, I wonder if she’s OK?” and people went to find out. It is really, really encouraging. So, on behalf of the Queen a HUGE, HUGE thank you.”                                                                         

Sir Kenneth went on to join volunteers in helping distribute food items, some of which were donated by World Food brand, Tropical Sun, owned by Wanis International Foods, one of the largest private employers in the borough. Their Commercial Director, George Phillips, said: “It is an honour to be able to support this amazing charity and we are delighted that their hard work has been recognised by Her Majesty.”

If you would like to help support the work of PL84U AL-SUFFA you can donate by visiting www.pl84ualsuffa.co.uk

Written by: Emma Macorison 

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