Mukana hyötyruokajaossa

Olen Carey ja olen toisen vuoden sosionomi-opiskelija. Opiskelen Diakissa englannin kielellä. Olen englantilainen ja olen asunut Suomessa jo 10 vuotta. Tulevaisuudessa haluaisin tehdä työtä maahanmuuttajien parissa.

Aloitin toisen työharjoitteluni Hermannin Diakoniatalon Varustamolla, Turvaverkko- projektissa, helmikuussa. Harjoitteluni kestää 12 viikkoa. Olen iloinen, että voin oppia lisää suomen kieltä ja tutustua erilaisiin ihmisiin ja tarjolla oleviin palveluihin. Olen ollut mm. auttamassa hyötyruokajaossa ja siitä haluankin nyt kertoa.

Along with my other work here, I have been helping twice a week with the food sharing service we provide to the public. It is a way of using the unsold food from shops and businesses which would otherwise be thrown away.

Every Tuesday and Thursday morning, inside the food share, the dedicated volunteers await the delivery of the food from the distribution center. They do not know what food will arrive and it always varies in quantity. Sometimes there is very little, but Keijo who runs the services always makes sure the people in que receive something when they need it. He wisely keeps a reserve of essential, non-perishable goods for those days when the que is long and there is not a big food delivery.

Food is divided into sections according to the type of food, such as bread, fruit, vegetables, meat and main meals, salad and finally pulla, desserts and yoghurts. When people come to the food share, they can then take one item from each section.

Twice a week a huge que for the food share stretches and meanders around the building. Due to corona, people are let into the food share one at a time and are asked to keep a 2-meter distance. Everyone must wear a mask. Luckily, due to the kindness of one parishioner who has hand sewn a huge amount of beautiful washable masks, we can offer masks to those who need one. We also give instructions to where they can get masks for free, which Helsinki City provides.

People come week in and week out, but there is also a growing number of people joining the que. Every week for the past few months the number of people using the food aid is growing. Last week in total we gave food to almost 300 people at Hermannin Diakoniatalon Varustamo alone.

The food Share service is open for everyone, but typically only those in need are using the service. Before starting my work in the food share, I had heard rumours that people go to the food share just to “save money” or because they “don’t want to buy food, and only want to spend their money on alcohol or tobacco”. I have always had the opinion however, that someone who could afford to go to the shops to buy milk and bread, probably would not want to que in the rain, snow or sub-zero temperatures for it.

After my experience in the food share, I can see that this service is important and vital to many vulnerable people. Keijo and all the volunteers are doing a much needed and important job, especially during the pandemic and the hardships it has brought on many people.

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