Homeless support charity, Let’s Feed Brum, has today received royal recognition, being honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS). The equivalent to an MBE for charities, the QAVS shines a light on the fantastic work of groups like Let’s Feed Brum from across the nation, and is the highest award given to local voluntary groups.
Providing hot food, drinks, essential supplies, and friendship to those living on the streets and at risk of homelessness, Let’s Feed Brum has been on-hand to help every day for the past six years. Since it was founded in 2016, the charity has evolved to become one of the driving forces behind supporting the homeless community in Birmingham; working closely with other key services to signpost support and get people the help they need.
The volunteer-led charity co-ordinates nightly walkabouts, as well as Breakfast Clubs at Birmingham Cathedral every Tuesday and Thursday, and monthly events at hostels and refuges across the city.
Following rigorous assessment, the QAVS was awarded to Let’s Feed Brum in praise of its volunteers that deliver its vital work, day after day. The QAVS specifically recognise groups that are truly outstanding and making a big difference to their local community. Groups where volunteers, rather than paid staff, are in the driving seat; and groups that have highest standards in everything they do.
Co-founder and Chair of the Board of Trustees at Let’s Feed Brum, Tara Tomes, commented on the award:
“We are absolutely over the moon to have received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, and I know it will mean the world to every single one of our amazing volunteers. Their dedication, compassion, humility, and kindness is truly humbling, and to have that recognised by this hugely prestigious award is a testament to each one of our amazing volunteers.”
As well as its regular outreach services, Let’s Feed Brum also offers support and guidance to the city’s homeless community through events with partner agencies – like hostels, refuges, and community kitchens. The charity also runs a Friendship Chatline: a free phone-line manned by volunteers to signpost users to resources and further assistance, should they need it. The number provides another lifeline for those facing homelessness in their time of need.
Every volunteer taking part in the chatline, along with the evening and breakfast team leaders, has participated in training sessions to ensure they are equipped to signpost the right services and support people in a meaningful way.
“Let’s Feed Brum is run entirely by volunteers and the operation really does take an army! From our volunteers who keep our LFB Hub stocked and organised; to our team leaders who ensure that each LFB Breakfast service and daily walkabout goes without a hitch; we’re lucky to have over 300 hours donated by volunteers every single week… that’s 18,000 volunteer hours a year!
It is no overstatement to say that we would not be able to do the work we do without each and every person who shares a smile, conversation, or piece of advice with those we help,” concluded Tara.
To find out more about how you can contribute to Let’s Feed Brum, visit: www.letsfeedbrum.com.