During lockdown, HSDC Havant EFL Lecturer and Spanish A Level Course Manager Raquel Cabo-Acosta has been busy volunteering in her spare time with Acts of Kindness (Solent).
Acts of Kindness (Solent) is run by a group of volunteers who support the community, including the homeless, vulnerable families or vulnerable elderly people, by providing food parcels and delivering prescriptions. Their mission is to alleviate the impact this pandemic has had on those most vulnerable in their community. As well as being the Foodbank for Fareham, Gosport, Portchester and the western wards, the volunteers are also setting up a dedicated phone service to give support for those in isolation. Volunteers will call these people regularly to provide a listening ear and ensure their mental health is supported with a bit of conversation.
Raquel describes what she does:
“I work at HSDC part time, so on Wednesdays, which are my days off, I am on call to deliver food or medicine. During the rest of the week, I take breaks between lessons and make the odd delivery; this is a good excuse to exercise as I walk. I might also do a couple of collections from supermarkets that donate products.
“This experience has been an eye-opener. Last week I did a food delivery and saw the situation in which some people live. Some of us are fortunate enough to have a garden; this delivery was to a family of four living in a flat with no outside space. I am not allowed to enter the premises, but what I saw was enough to make me realise their living conditions were not optimal. Yet these people managed a smile and a ‘thank you’ when they received their weekly shop.
“It is nice to know that I am doing something to try to make this world a better place.”
Everything Acts of Kindness (Solent) gives out is free but welcomes donations, whether monetary or in the form of essentials and food, as well as anyone who wants to join their army of volunteers. More information is available on their website.