We help Lambeth residents who are in or at-risk of food and financial crisis. They live on the margins of society due to economic, social, environmental, cultural and ethnic disadvantages. They include young people and their families (often single parents), elderly, unemployed, disabled, long-term ill health, minority communities and living in deprivation. Covid created new and increased needs; exaggerating the multiple and complex issues our beneficiaries are facing. There are high levels of poverty throughout Lambeth, and these communities have very little to fall back on leaving them additionally vulnerable to unmanageable debt, nutrition/food poverty, isolation, neglect and poor health.
We keep vulnerable residents less isolated, connected to support and more empowered to make positive choices for their wellbeing. We also support the VCSE sector itself to form strategic partnerships and access the information and resources they need to better support their communities. We host a Lambeth-wide online interactive map of provision and disseminate information on the full scope of support available to vulnerable and disadvantaged people; including our unique paper Directory of Services (20,000 copies a year) for digitally excluded people. We help coordinate VCSE groups, share information, opportunities, resources and expertise. We reach around 15,000 people a year with this work.
Our work is not new. Pre Covid-19 we were already focused on mapping and coordinating provision around systemic issues including holiday hunger, food poverty and debt management. We play a vital lead role in the VCSE sector, providing a virtual hub that connects diverse VCSE and statutory support services together (for partnership working) and with residents in need (direct beneficiaries). In short, we are undertaking the lead role of Lambeth’s Coordinator (and dissemination/distribution) of Information for the community sector’s food, financial and Covid-19 poverty and wellbeing response. We connect the Community, VCSE, NHS, Mutual Aid groups, Lambeth Council, TRA’s and faith groups.