Dubai: The UAE Food Bank will feed thousands of workers this Ramadan with support of donors including individual residents, food establishments and government departments.
The Food Bank, which channelised the donation of 2,160 tonnes of food during its first year of operation since last April, on Thursday announced its partnerships with various entities for food donation during Ramadan.
In a joint initiative with the Community Development Authority (CDA), the Food Bank will provide 500 meals to workers on a daily basis.
The suhoor meals will be distributed to workers after Taraweeh prayers throughout Ramadan with the participation of nearly 700 volunteers of all categories and ages. The Bank will also coordinate with various government agencies to volunteer for the initiative.
In coordination with Careem, the Bank will collect surplus food from individual residents and deliver it to the UAE Food Bank fridges distributed in 80 mosques in Dubai.
In addition, the Bank, in coordination with the Zabeel Palace provides 1,500 snacks daily and 500 meals daily to RTA bus drivers, and 700 meals per day for workers in the labour accommodations.
Officials said the plan is to distribute free meals to at least 2,000 workers every day. The Bank has received offers for 1,800 meals daily as of now and more donors are expected to join soon.
The establishments and companies that will contribute to providing meals to the UAE Food Bank include Sadia, Al Islami, Farzana Vegetable Traders, West Zone Supermarket, LuLu Hypermarket, Barakat Catering, LuLu Catering, Caesars Catering, Al Marai and Aliya Trading. Awareness and education programmes for various groups of the society will be organised to raise awareness on the importance of reducing food waste.
These details were announced after the UAE Food Bank’s Board held its meeting under the chairmanship of Dawood Al Hajiri, Director-General of Dubai Municipality and vice-chairman of the Board, as per the directives of Shaikha Hind Bint Juma Al Maktoum, chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the UAE Food Bank.
Al Hajiri, who welcomed the members, conveyed to them the appreciation of Shaikha Hind on the efforts and achievements of the Bank, which resulted in collecting 2,160 tonnes of food during the last one year and agreements with 35 food establishments, 13 charities and three sponsors.
Spreading to other emirates
During the last one year, the Food Bank distributed 80 fridges in the mosques in Dubai, 10 each in Ajman and Ras Al Khaimah. During the first quarter of 2018, the total amount of foodstuffs received reached 232 tonnes while 1,000 meals provided by Zabeel Palace are distributed to workers every Friday. Fridges are now activated through direct donations from some food establishments.
The Food Bank took part in various events to channelise donation of surplus food items and also to spread awareness against food wastage.
Al Hajiri said that the 2018 plan will focus on coordination with the other emirates to establish the UAE Food Bank collection sites.
“The pilot operation has started in Ajman in coordination with Shaikh Humaid Bin Rashid Al Nuaimi Charity Foundation and under the supervision of Ajman Municipality. In addition, the first site in Ras Al Khaimah will be inaugurated during Ramadan under the supervision of Ras Al Khaimah Municipality.