Our Harvest Appeal this year is a joint appeal for two initiatives for people in need, locally and internationally - the Waltham Abbey Food Bank, which supports single people, couples and families in Waltham Abbey who find themselves in crisis, and Wateraid, whose vision is a world where everyone has access to safe water and sanitation.
The Waltham Abbey Food Bank
For the Food Bank we will be collecting items of non-perishable food from their “shopping list”, such as UHT or powdered milk, sugar (500gms), long life fruit juice, tins of soup, pasta sauces, tinned sponge pudding , tinned tomatoes, tinned vegetables, breakfast cereals, tinned rice pudding, tea bags, jar of instant coffee, instant mash, rice (500gms), pasta (500gms), tinned meat/fish, tinned fruit, jar of jam, packets of biscuits, snacks, but no baked beans please!
1 in 5 people are living below the poverty line in the UK. Every day people on low incomes go hungry for reasons ranging from redundancy to benefit delay, domestic violence or receiving an unexpected bill. Food banks provide emergency food and support. UK foodbank use continues to rise with over one million three-day emergency food supplies given to people in crisis in 2016/17. Food banks help to prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems. A simple box of food can make a big difference.
The Waltham Abbey Food Bank, a joint initiative by Churches Together in Waltham Abbey, is based at the Salvation Army Hall in Sewardstone Street and is run by volunteers from local churches. The Food Bank is open to clients on Wednesdays and Fridays between 4.30 and 5.30pm.
The Waltham Abbey Food Bank is working closely with existing local food banks across the county border in Broxbourne and sharing not only their considerable experience and expertise but also their distribution centre at Goff’s Oak. A targeted voucher system is being used so that each client receives food appropriate to their own situation and any dietary needs or allergies can be accommodated. The vouchers are supplied by organisations and service providers already working with clients in crisis.
The Food Bank would be keen to hear from anyone interested in volunteering to help run the scheme.
At Harvest and during October please pray for the work of the Food Bank in the town and provide non-perishable foods to support that work. Thank you.
Safe water and sanitation are basic human rights for everyone, yet one in eight people don’t have safe water to drink and over two and half billion live without somewhere safe and clean to go to the toilet. WaterAid works in thirty-four countries and to date has helped over fifteen million people. It enables the world’s poorest people to gain access to safe water and sanitation, which underpin health, education and livelihoods, forming the essential first step in overcoming poverty.
WaterAid works with local partner organisations who understand local issues and also campaigns locally and internationally to change policy and practice and ensure that water, hygiene and sanitation’s vital role in reducing poverty is recognised.
In 2016 Zambia was hit by its worst drought in thirty-five years. Around half a million people were left malnourished and hungry. Climate change means that Zambia is experiencing longer droughts in the dry season and more intense wet periods resulting in flooding. Climate change is water change and the effects are devastating.
Orine is a 27-year-old mother in Moompo village in Southern Zambia. She cannot collect enough water to drink, let alone to grow food for her family. They eat wild fruits, leaves and edible roots in the bush and wait for another day. They are trapped in this hopeless situation because Moompo does not have a reliable source of clean water that can last through longer, more extreme dry seasons.
Wateraid has thirty-five years’ experience in bringing long-term sustainable water solutions to communities like Orine’s. During the Harvest season please pray for her and those like her struggling with water shortage and give generously to WaterAid’s life-saving work. You can read more about WaterAid on the display around the tower staircase or at www.wateraid.org.