Restorative Justice for All, a charity helping young people in Southwark, says demand for its support services increased by 400% during the pandemic.
The charity is one of many in the borough given an emergency grant of £500 by Tesco and to receive donated food for its work supporting those struggling with food insecurity. has been supporting marginalised youth throughout the coronavirus pandemic with nutritious meals and mental health guidance.
Throughout lockdown the charity, known as RJ4All, provided 2,383 meals to Southwark residents, donated PPE equipment to more than 20 key workers based in the borough, set up a web page with resources to help young people who are faced with mental health challenges due to COVID-19’s impact, and manned a free mental health helpline open from 10am-10pm Monday-Sunday.
Dr. Theo Gavrielides, the charity’s founder and director, said: “The support we have received from our local Tesco has been incredible.
“The Bags of Help funding as well as the food donations we received through their partnership with FareShare made our youth-led ‘You are not Alone’ COVID-19 relief project a reality.
“As a local resident, I know the difference that this kind of gesture means to those who are most in need in SE16.”
Keith Jackson, from Tesco, said: “Due to the sustained need for the emergency support we’re seeing from local community groups, we took the decision to extend the scheme’s deadline beyond the original twelve-week mark.
“We’re already working with all kinds of groups up the length and breadth of the country, all of whom are in urgent need of a cash boost in order to go on providing local people with vital services, but we’ve widened this even further.
“Whether you are from a homeless charity, a food bank, or a support network for vulnerable individuals, you could qualify for some immediate financial support.”
Apply for funding via www.tescobagsofhelp.org.uk