Charity boost for frontline NHS staff

Thousands of lifesaving face masks donated to city hospital.

A leading Muslim charity is helping the vulnerable and the NHS with face masks in Birmingham as part of a £1 million appeal to offer a lifeline to people in need and isolated by the impact of the Coronavirus.

Al-Khair Foundation is operating a national helpline for people as the country deals with restrictions and hardships caused by the virus.

In Birmingham volunteers have already been working hard out on the streets, set up a mental health helpline and also donated 5,000 vitally needed face masks to the Birmingham City Hospital.

Hospital Procurements Manager Michael Sum said: “It is an ongoing situation trying to get as much Personal Protective Equipment as we can. Thanks to your generosity Birmingham City Hospital now has 5,000 masks bought by Al-Khair Foundation to protect the frontline staff while they care for COVID-19 patients and save lives.

“Thank you and keep donating.”

As well as the masks initial food deliveries were made to those in the community self-isolating and unable to venture out.

Thabrez Khan from AKF’s Birmingham office on Ladypool Road, said: “We are continuously working around the clock to not only to drop off food items to homes, but we are also carrying out weekly shops for the most vulnerable and just last week we delivered over 5,000 masks to the City Hospital Birmingham. We managed to source them from a local supplier/contact and wanted to help the NHS as much as we could.

“Our office has been transformed into a food drop off point and we are currently working with Age UK who are providing food baskets to the elderly. We are also working closely with local caterers so that we can start getting hot meals delivered where necessary. We are currently receiving around sixty calls day and some of which have been people reaching out for advice or for a chance to talk.

“We have also started up a mental health helpline. People can call us if they are feeling anxious about the current situation or if they would simply just like someone to talk through their issues with. The helpline number is 03000999786. We think it is a great idea and is being used quite frequently. We want people to know that we are here for them – whatever is on their mind.

“We are trying our best to stay on top of the crisis but at this time it’s very difficult to get food in bulk so we would really appreciate any help from the public” .

The Birmingham work is part of a national service providing shopping and medication collection and delivery, healthcare advice and friendly phone calls to alleviate loneliness throughout the UK via charity’s network of branches across the country.

The initiative is also being rolled out internationally in Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Turkey and the Middle East.

AKF Founder & Chairman Imam Qasim said: “We are launching our £1 million appeal to respond to pandemic impacted people both in the UK and globally. We will be working with communities and governments to put plans together to deal with crisis situation and assisting them with aid supplies and more importantly medical support.

“People can donate monies or even donate food supplies, medical items and donation in kind. It is vital we work urgently to help all those impacted.”

Volunteers across the UK are needed and can make contact by calling Al-Khair Foundation on 03000 999 786 or sending them a message on Al-Khair Foundation Facebook.

The Foundation, which is based on Croydon, has been praised for its work in areas such as unemployment, education, women’s empowerment and domestic violence. It has also provided help through floods and storm damage in recent years in the UK.

Internationally, it has delivered £165m million in aid focusing on emergencies, health, water, education, women, livelihood and shelter. To donate call 03000 999 786 or visit