When COVID19 hit, it plunged many in usually self-sufficient societies into unemployment and economic hardship. Sarah Keeble, a friend of the church living in West Fife (Dunfermline, Scotland), was quick to notice a need, and began to give her surplus cooked meals to neighbours.
Sarah said, “No matter religion, race, background, education or economic status we are all vulnerable to facing hard challenges.
However, right now this pandemic is affecting us all. There are few provisions in place for those struggling to work whilst in poverty and the prospect of having to refer yourself and loved ones to existing food poverty charities is difficult. Our mission is to not turn anyone away. We strive to find a solution where there is no shame, fear or judgement.
Our group's motivation comes from my own personal hardships which has gifted me with more empathy and resilience, it comes deep from inside my heart. Nobody will ever be made to feel like they don't have a safe place to come to and ask for support if they come to us.'
It quickly became apparent that many elderly people, and ‘very-vulnerable’ individuals who were ‘shielding’, could no longer leave their homes to collect shopping and many working families were struggling to live on the lower income of a ‘furloughed’ life. As a result, the demand for help increased daily. Donations of time and resources from the public poured in.
Sarah established West Fife Support for the Vulnerable (see Facebook). Due to the generosity of the public in donating food, Sarah quickly outgrew her home storage space; she needed more help.
Dunfermline Ward members were fortunate to meet Sarah at this point and were very happy to offer her the use of the chapel.
The members of the Ward were quick to volunteer to help collect donations, pack food parcels, sort clothing donations, and help coordinate the relief effort.
Thanks to Sarah’s efforts, supported by members of Dunfermline ward and LDS Charities, as well as the incredible response of the local community, the relief effort West Fife Support for the Vulnerable is growing daily and by the end of May it had helped over 400 people in need