Team effort: For You and Dungannon Swifts Football Club.
IN these unprecedented times, help and support, often in short supply, are very much welcomed and always appreciated.
One such voluntary group carrying out sterling work in the midst of the coronavirus crisis is Dungannon-based group “For You”.
Based at Feeney's Lane in the town, “For You” Social Enterprise provides assistance to families in need of clothing and household furniture.
A non-profit making concern, the local group is now delivering hot meals for over 50 families in the Dungannon, Moy, Coalisland, Killyman and Ballygawley areas after being approached by Dungannon Swifts Football Club's Charitable Trust who offered to the meals.
You could call it a team effort.
“For You” was set up by Dungannon native Glena McDowell-Khan who now lives in Clogher.
Glena told the Courier: “In October last I saw there was a need for some kind of support for local families on low incomes in the Dungannon borough.
“Vulnerable families were facing many issues including over occupied homes and heavy rental demands from landlords. Working wages were not enough to meet their needs and so I decided to see if I could help.”
With the help of her family and a group of volunteers, Glena set up the Social Enterprise centre at Feeney's Lane and aptly called it “For You”. In addition she also runs a charity “Me, you and them” for those facing mental health issues.
Continued Glena: “I initially put out a call to the community of the borough and was overwhelmed by those seeking help and also those wishing to volunteer and those who wished to make donations.”
The “For You” is a second hand shop for families on low incomes who can purchase clothing and home furniture, all kindly donated and we cater for around 50 families... and counting.
Busy as Glena and her volunteers are, they recently identified another urgent need in the borough due to the current coronavirus crisis.
“COVID-19 has resulted in people staying indoors and keeping safe and that in itself has brought challenges,” she said.
“We had been working with the Dungannon Swifts Charitable Trust who brought along dry foods and non perishable goods to our foodbank and this was distributed to families.
“The current crisis has heightened that need and the Dungannon Swifts Charitable Trust offered to do cooked meals for people in the community through ourselves, with the hot meals distributed by For You to those most in need.”
Local businesses came on board with offers of help including Ellie's Restaurant, Bob & Berts, Fooddoc, Tescos and Lidl and also Vivo and Quinn's Butchers in Ballygawley, to name but a few.
The meals are prepared daily by Dungannon Swifts and the “For You” volunteers and while many call and collect their meals, others are delivered by Glena, her volunteers and Dungannon Swifts.
See the full story in this week's Tyrone Courier...