Global’s Make Some Noise 2022: Meet SocietyLinks, the charity helping families during the cost of living crisis

7 October 2022, 11:14

Joyce Archbold and Rahima Khanon from SocietyLinks speak to LBC

By Phoebe Dampare Osei

“There is a need” for support for families during the cost of living crisis, charity workers Joyce Archbold and Rahima Khanon tell Nick Ferrari on Global’s Make Some Noise Day.

Today is Global’s Make Some Noise Day where donations to LBC’s charity, Make some Noise, go to several charities across the UK.

Nick Ferrari on Breakfast at LBC spoke to SocietyLinks Founder Joyce Archbold and Project Manager Rahima Khanon, who said “there is a need” to support families during the cost of living crisis.

Ms Archbold said: “We’re a community organisation, we’re a charity…we run community services for people throughout East London, in particular Tower Hamlets.”

She added: “We realised that there was a need for families, not just young people, our older people, our babies and toddlers. It was a traditional community centre that could serve everybody, and therefore we were able to set up the charity and get support from partners in the area.”

Join LBC for Make Some Noise Day today
Join LBC for Make Some Noise Day today. Picture: LBC

On the cost of living crisis, Ms Khanon said: “We are seeing people reach out to us who weren’t reaching out to us for help and support before. We do a food distribution service on a Thursday, we partner with The Felix Project”.

The Felix Project website says it “collects fresh, nutritious food that cannot be sold” and delivers it “to charities and schools so they can provide healthy meals and help the most vulnerable”.

Ms Khanon continued: “The queues for that and the people that are coming and asking for help now - it’s quite astonishing really. We did kick it off around COVID, we kept going after COVID, and there's an obvious need for it. If there wasn’t a need for it it wouldn’t exist.”

Nick Ferrari asked how the team keep going, to which the founder replied: “We’re passionate about what we do. Many of our team members live in the community, and so they're aware of the need.”

She also explained the harsh reality that even people who are working need additional support in the cost of living crisis.

Ms Archbold said: “The food distribution, 60% of the people coming are working. They are working and then their washing machine goes, their fridge goes, they have to get a loan to replace that. There’s £20 a week out of their budget, they’re struggling. We’ve seen families actually give up tenancies and move in with extended family because then they can share the bills.

“You have three generations - 11 people living in a three bedroom property just so they can cover the cost of the bills, and again that brings in health issues overcrowdedness, children can’t study because there’s no space but they’re thankful they’ve got a roof over their heads.”

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When asked how they would use some of the money raised, Ms Khanon said: “Our project that we put forward is a bit of an all-rounder project. So the needs that we focused on are families eating healthily, providing nutrition.”

She continued: “We’ve got multicultural cooking happening. It would happen on site and we would live stream it because we tried that during COVID over Instagram Live and it’s to get parents cooking with their teens and their young people at home.”

Ms Archbold added: “Also part of this project is English classes and also IT and budgeting, so looking at breaking down budgets and bills.”

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