We are the Dons Local Action Group, a network of volunteers based in South-West London. We need your help to raise £10,000 to purchase our own van so that we can continue to help those in our community in need of support by providing food and household goods.
THE STORY SO FAR
Just five months old, we were set up by fans of AFC Wimbledon football club to provide food and support for people shielding during lockdown. We began with a table and a sign outside a supermarket in Wimbledon collecting donations from shoppers. From here we grew rapidly and are now an army of 1,500 volunteers.
We now have 20 collection points outside supermarkets across the London boroughs of Merton, Wandsworth and Kingston and receive referrals from charities and aid agencies. The response and enthusiasm from our volunteers and community has helped us to grow beyond our wildest dreams.
“The Dons Local Action Group are nothing short of amazing! Practical, entrepreneurial and inspirational. I love them.”
Siobhain McDonagh, MP for Mitcham and Merton
Since March, we have delivered over 31,000 one-week food parcels to shielding households and those in need. Our unique approach, standing outside supermarkets and collecting food means a very quick turnaround of produce and allows us to pack our parcels with a weeks' supply of fresh food and dry goods.
"Thank you so much for your kindness and support during such a sad and difficult time. You are all heroes."
Vera, food parcel recipient
Our work has grown to supplying foodbanks, homeless charities, meal services and many more. Our volunteer model and in particular, our ability to rouse so many people willing to give their time, allows us to leverage enormous community support, and in turn, support other local charities and organisations to enhance their work.
WORKING WITH PARTNERS
We work with a range of local partners. We give a weekly supply of fresh fruit and vegetables to The Fresh Foodbank. We also take referrals from, or directly provide items of food for Women's Refuge, Christian Care and a host of other local charities, churches and housing estate initiatives.
We created the London Furniture Collective in partnership with Merton Mutual Aid, which collects unwanted items of household furniture and delivers them to those in need. Over 150 items have been reallocated working with Home-Start Wandsworth, Battersea Children's Centres, Community Housing Kingston, Christian Care Merton, Citizen's Advice Richmond and several schools and early years settings.
WHY WE NEED YOUR HELP
We need your help to raise £10,000 to buy our own van and enable us to continue to support our community. We've been lucky enough to have one on loan since lockdown. But we must now find a permanent solution for this vital part of our work, collecting food from our stalls, taking it to our hub and delivering food parcels and other household goods. With the country facing an uncertain future, referrals for our help continue to come in. We want to be there and ready to help anyone that needs it.
The end of lockdown is not the end for the Dons Local Action Group. We show how effective a community can be when it comes together. Your support will help us to grow so that we can reach as many people as possible. Please share our page with all your friends and family.