First food parcels arrive at doorsteps of vulnerable people
First food parcels arrive at doorsteps of vulnerable people being shielded from coronavirus with 50,000 are set to be delivered this week
- The first 2,000 packages were delivered over the weekend to the housebound
- Packages contain essentials such as toilet roll, pasta, fruit and tinned goods
- A total of 1.5 million vulnerable people are being asked to self-isolate
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
Food parcels have begun arriving at the doors of the most vulnerable people who are being shielded from coronavirus.
The first 2,000 packages were delivered over the weekend to those who cannot leave their homes because severe health conditions put them at risk.
The Government expects more than 50,000 deliveries this week but this could rise to hundreds of thousands of boxes, depending on demand.
A stock image of food parcels containing essentials being sent to people across the country
The packages contain essentials such as toilet roll, pasta, fruit and tinned goods and are being directed at those self-isolating for 12 weeks but have little support from family or friends.
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick joined a delivery in Paddock Wood, Kent, where a pack of chocolate cereal was also included.
He said: ‘This weekend sees the start of extraordinary steps to support the most clinically vulnerable, while they shield from coronavirus.’
An army of volunteers have been delivering goods to elderly and vulnerable people across Britain. Pictured left: Cathy Stockwell, one of the many volunteers who have signed up to help the vulnerable and elderly. Right: Mrs Dorothy Hague receiving her food parcel
‘We will support these people at this difficult time, and the scale of an operation like that has not been seen since the Second World War.’
While the deliveries will be welcomed, there are major concerns over the mounting pressure being heaped on the food banks that routinely serve those too poor to buy ingredients.
A total of 1.5 million extremely vulnerable people are being asked to shield themselves. Officials say 900,000 have been written to so far to inform them of the steps.
But GPs must contact 600,000 more who are not on a national register, a Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government spokeswoman said.
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