Today is Tuesday 15th of December, meaning that we are back with the #GivingTuesday! This week, our volunteers Lucinda and Ingrid present you our Lunch4refugees!
This project originally started 4 years ago and was known as “Breakfast4Refugees”. Volunteers would serve hot drinks and sandwiches in the morning to migrants and refugees, outside of the asylum offices in Brussels, in the Parc Maximilien, Gare du Nord and Petit Chateau. Due to outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic, the project has been relocated to the Red Cross center at lunch time. This new center opened in September, and is a collaboration between the Red Cross and other organizations that provide lunch and dinner to people in need every day of the week. Lunch4Refugees takes place three times a week, every Monday, Tuesday, and Saturday. Serve the City volunteers provide complementary hot drinks, fruits, and snacks as well as water, and another organization provide a hot meal at the same time. Together, volunteers feed around 400 people a day.
“I volunteer for this project because I think it is a super important cause. When I moved to Brussels, I noticed they were a lot of people in the streets, compared to where I am from. I was new to the city and wanted to do something, to integrate in the community, meet people and give something back” says Lucinda, the project leader. “Something that I find very touching is that recently we were doing our service as usual and one of the beneficiaries came with flower to say thank you. That was a really nice moment.”
“For me, it’s important to volunteer because I live in this neighborhood and I want to do something to help out the people who are in need. I want to reach out anyone who feels like they need a nice and warm place to be, a place to talk, a place to get their minds off of the tough things in life” explains Ingrid, a regular volunteer at the project.
On December 5th 2020, in addition to the food distribution centre, the Red Cross also opened a day center. This day center has the capacity to welcome 120 people and is opened from 13:00 to 17:30. People in need now have a nice and warm place to stay during the day. Ingrid recalls: “Last week the day center opened. It was a very big breath of fresh air to see everyone that we usually only serve a coffee to, be able to sit down, have fun, have a laugh, watch videos on their phones together, and just have a good time!”
You can help support Serve the City and the Lunch4Refugees project by donating now. Even a small amount can make a big difference. Why not helping us plan ahead by becoming a monthly donor? Serve the City is also in need of volunteers for this project.
Interested? Check out our website and register for volunteering shifts on our app.
Let’s celebrate the #GivingTuesday together.
Thank you for your kindness!