In Little London and Woodhouse, my fellow ward councillors, Javaid Akhtar and Kayleigh Brooks, and I have been working with local charity Oblong and have recruited 150 amazing volunteers, including from the local party. But this is just one among so many local charities and organisations who are working together to ensure vulnerable people, and anyone who needs help, are looked after. We are so proud of the way people have pulled together in response to this crisis.
Little London has a high BAME population and we are working with Leeds Grand Mosque to provide free hot meals and food shopping especially during Ramadan. Plus our emerging Leeds African Communities Network is delivering ethnic food and essential such as toiletries. The feedback has been phenomenal. Refugees and asylum seekers have been particularly hard hit and we are working with Positive Action for Asylum Seekers and Refugees and other organisations to offer what support we can.
Caring Together looks after people aged 55 and over. They are delivering free food, shopping and providing telephone support and advice, especially with benefits. The Gateway Church in Woodhouse is providing free meals over three days a week and supporting other local charities financially. Freedom4girls has donated boxes of sanitary towels and toiletries for young girls in our community and we are in awe of their hard work tackling period poverty.
This is mirrored across our district with a magnificent response from Leeds City Council. It is working with Voluntary Action Leeds and many local organisations.
I can’t over-emphasise what a huge contribution these local organisations are making. But it hasn’t stopped there – local businesses have also contributed, with donations to ensure people are looked after. I have never been more proud to represent my ward and serve in this great city of compassion.