Westminster Befriend a Family

Westminster Befriend a Family works with local foodbank

westminster foodbank

Westminster Befriend a Family works with local foodbank

 westminster foodbankWestminster Befriend a Family (WBAF) is a referrer for the Westminster Foodbank.

WBAF is working with Westminster Chapel, who set up the initiative, to alleviate hunger faced by the poorer residents of Westminster.

Foodbanks provide three days’ worth of food in exchange for a voucher.  Westminster Foodbank supplies these vouchers to its partner organisations who give them to clients who have been assessed.  Foodbanks are designed as a short-term solution only, and partner organisations work with clients to deal with clients’ longer term requirements.

“We are excited about this initiative that Westminster Chapel has set up. Not being able to feed your family is sadly becoming more common.  We are grateful to those who have donated food, and those that have donated their time to help out at the foodbank. It’s great when the community pulls together to tackle a pressing need especially in the light of the economic crisis,” said Jacqueline Crooks, Director of Westminster Befriend a Family.

The Westminster Foodbank is open on Mondays between 2 and 4pm and Thursdays between 11am and 1pm.

Westminster Foodbank at Westminster Chapel, Buckingham Gate, London, SW1E 6BS Tel: 020 7834 1731 x 243. Email: foodbank@westminsterchapel.org.uk


Every Second Counts…

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For more information: www.befriendafamily.co.uk/every-second-counts/

Every Second Counts is a campaign run by Westminster Befriend a Family (WBAF) to raise funds to provide practical help and support to disadvantaged families in Westminster who are unable to cope with the debilitating problems they are going through.

WBAF Extends Family Support Services to 17 & 18 Year Olds

WBAF is delighted to announce that it will be extending its Family Support Services to 17 and 18 year olds.  

“Not only are we the only charity in Westminster to support children aged 0-16 and their families inside and outside their homes, we will be piloting a scheme to support 17-18 year-olds and their families.  If the pilot is successful we will roll out the scheme to more young people, said Jacqueline Crooks, WBAF’s Director of Services “

The decision was taken to increase the age range because there are emerging issues facing young people, such as sexual exploitation and increasing numbers of young people affected by crime and mental health difficulties.

“We are keen to use our experience and work in partnership with social services teams to pick up cases where young people and their families do not meet the threshold for social work intervention, so that these young people and their families do not fall through the net.  We will provide mentors to these young people to encourage and empower them to be the young men and women of tomorrow,” said Jacqueline Crooks.


WBAF director wins community leadership award

Our charity’s director, Jacqueline Crooks, has won Westminster City Council’s Living City award for leadership in community services. Jacqueline beat 100 nominees for the award, which recognised her “unstinting commitment to raising money, training volunteers and using her leadership skills to arrange help for so many isolated families”.

Westminster City Council announced the six winners of the awards on January 20. The ceremony, held at Paddington Academy, was attended by community leaders, representatives from the council, the police and the NHS. Those honoured each received £500 to help them to continue to develop their work.

Jacqueline said: “I am delighted to receive the award in recognition of our dedicated volunteers who support some of the most vulnerable families in our community. It is a pleasure to work with such a talented group of volunteers.”

Nick Hurd, Minister for Civil Society, who helped to present the awards, said: “Westminster’s Living City awards are a great initiative that encompass what the Big Society is all about – giving power back to local people so that they can make a difference.”

Cllr Steve Summers, Westminster City Council’s cabinet member for community services, said: “Never has it been as important for the community to come together, to work with, and for one another, so that our city can prosper. This is what those nominated do every day. We rely on these community champions who are willing to go that extra mile to help those around them.

“In many cases they will work extra hours, or for free. These awards are aimed at honouring these local heroes and making sure their effort does not go unnoticed and act as inspiration for us all.”

Also among the attendees was The Apprentice’s Margaret Mountford, who is also chair of governors of a Westminster School. She said: “It is great that so many people come up with ideas and devote time to bringing the community together.

“Business can also have an important role. The opportunities it provides can give people a greater sense of responsibility to the areas they work in, and a feeling of ownership and belonging.”

The awards are sponsored by NHS Westminster, Vertex, New West End Company, the City of Westminster College, Grosvenor and the Metropolitan Police.