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North East Sanctuary Ambassador delivers food packages on his bike to support refugees

Photo credit: Marian Alonso

NHS staff, social workers, delivery drivers, care workers and all other frontline workers continue to do amazing work amidst COVID-19 pandemic. We are living in extraordinary times because of this deadly Coronavirus. People around the UK are mobilising to help the vulnerable during the COVID-19 crisis, from the more than half a million who have signed up to become NHS volunteers, to local groups trying to find shelter for the homeless, replenish food banks and make deliveries to the elderly and those self-isolating.

There are so many examples of people helping while at the same time trying to keep themselves and those whom they want to support safe. In the current COVID-19 crisis many groups are vulnerable within our communities and some people are self-isolating so, “Every Little Helps” if I may use Tesco’s slogan.

One such little but impactful example is an initiative by North East Sanctuary Ambassador MD Mominul Hamid. MD as he prefers to be called, working alongside other groups has been delivering emergency food packages to people seeking sanctuary on his bike around his neighbourhood in Newcastle, while taking the necessary social distancing measures. MD a campaigner and an asylum seeker himself from Bangladesh decided to run MD’s Little Help Food Packages delivering essentials on his bike.

He says “Social Justice is in the core of my value as a resident. I think it is my responsibility to stand in solidarity and help the people in my community who are in need in this challenging time. Being an asylum seeker myself it is vital we don’t forget society’s vulnerable. There are some refugees and asylum seekers who have been in the UK for a matter of days.”

MD ready to deliver food on his 2 wheel

MD who arrived in the UK at the age of 18 says “UK is my first home now.”  Although he personally faces challenges going through the asylum process, MD does not see it as a barrier to support others. He is motivated by the desire to give something back to the community and people of UK. He says, “Yes, there are problems in my life, everybody has but regardless of that we all should be there for People and for the Community. I believe in my mother’s word- I will always be there for my people, No matter what. Something good will happen in return.” Besides delivering food with his bike, MD has volunteered for a number of organisations. He is Sanctuary Scholar at Northumbria University and Refugee Week Leader UK for 2020.

People seeking sanctuary are also at risk for a number of reasons among them being new to the area so lack of support networks, some don’t speak English which creates communication barrier and while asylum seekers are waiting for decisions on their asylum claim they are not allowed to work and most rely with support from charities and elderly who volunteer in these charities. Therefore, the essential deliveries by MD and many other examples across the UK are important to support the  vulnerable within our communities.

More information about MD’s involvement within the community visit his blog link: www.abirking.com

And for all his videos clink this link here