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Emergency cultural support receives grant

Medway African and Caribbean Association in partnership with West Coast Kent CIC, are pleased to announce that we have been successful in a grant application from the Martin Lewis charity fund.

The ITV money saving expert who as well as being a regular presenter on ITV’s Good Morning Britain, hosts his own TV show, and has a Money Saving Expert website, launched a £3 million fund to charities who are struggling as a result of Covid 19.

MACA received £12, 500 which will go a long way to meeting its target of £25, 000 to provide culturally based support, including food hampers for Black elders in Kent.

MACA has until the lockdown been running a weekly drop in for members from the Black community which has also been open to people from a wide range of backgrounds for over 20 years.

“Since lockdown we have members who have felt very isolated and not able to engage with their friends, family, as well as access activities they would undertake at the drop in, this funding came as a total surprise and will enable us to start the project and provide much needed support “ Carol Stewart Chairperson MACA

The reason for this project being specifically targeted at Black African and Caribbean elders is because  recent figures have shown that Black people are disproportionality suffering and dying from Coronavirus, despite making up a smaller % of the UK population,

With hypertension, diabetes, Sickle Cell, Lupus and other conditions known to be a bigger risk factor amongst Black communities it is important that as a community they have access to a healthy and well-balanced diet that meets their cultural needs. The food hampers received from the Government do not always cater for people with culturally specific dietary needs or food allergies, and as such there is a risk that they may eat food that is unhealthy or not eat at all.

The project will be co-ordinated by Westcoast Kent Community Interest Company ( WKCIC established 2013) whose team as well as coordinating large scale events have the experience, are fully licensed, run restaurant facilities, have a 5-star food hygiene rating and are currently running a delivery and takeaway service in Thanet Southeast Kent with a small team of paid and volunteer staff.

The Home from Home community support programme seeks to provide the following:

Access to African/Caribbean meals, which can be delivered hot or delivered cold so that it can be heated up at home, or frozen

A telephone befriending service: recruit a team of volunteers who can make calls once a week to Black elders across Kent and Medway, and signposting where required

Provide culturally based food/household hampers: E.g. tins of Ackee, Callaloo, packets of Saltfish, seasoning, mackerel, plantain, Black hair products. These are just an example of what the hamper could include.

The Charity which has also launched a Go Fund me page has raised nearly £500 from donations within the first 24 hours of the campaign launch,

For more information and interviews contact

07501 497920