Meet Kathy, a born and bred Bermondsey woman with an old-school ethos about the community, having open arms which provide and protect each other. She knew she wanted to help during the national lockdown and quickly responded where she secured a space in the biscuit factory to set up hot meals and food parcels for elderly people who could not leave their houses. Her volunteers went from handing out 300 meals each week, in the beginning, to 2300 meals by the end of the lockdown. Now, she has her own shop in the heart of an estate, where she runs a food pantry and baby bank supporting families and older people with living essentials.
She has always enjoyed and been inspired by the history of Bermondsey. Bringing the tales of the past to life about Hannah Orchard through a community project, a female business owner who had her own fruit and veg shop and worked at Blue Market for 8 decades from 1921. She was well remembered for giving free fruit and veg to children. Now Kathy is doing something similar, as a pillar of the community, a legacy in the making.
Betty’s baby bank, named after her granddaughter, is a swap shop of well-needed items for families, such as clothes, baby food, nappies and even prams. She knew there was more she could do to help the families that walked through her doors by encouraging others to share unwanted or outgrown items that can support other women in these tough times. If you need or want to donate, please head down to Slipper Place, SE16 2EN.
At United St Saviour’s, we think he is one of Southwark’s extraordinary #CommunityChampions