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'Lifeline' food project in plea to businesses for support
7:32am Monday 7th July 2014 in News
LIFELINE: Bradford curry circle volunteer Atiyah Zafar serves up food at the Carlisle Business Centre
A curry circle in Bradford that provides a 'lifeline" food service or homeless and vulnerable people has issued a plea for financial support as demand increases.
Since last December, the Muslim Women's Council-run Curry Circle project has been providing a hot two-course meal for people in need on a weekly basis. In that time more than 2,000 meals have been dished out.
Bradford restaurant Cafe Lahore provides the food and sponsors one week in four, but, as the number of people needing to attend the circle increases - more than 100 people attend every Thursday at the club's partnership organisation, Carlisle Business Centre in Manningham - the women's council said more sponsors are needed.
Its chief executive officer Bana Gora praised Cafe Lahore for its help, and added: "The Curry Circle has received great support from local businesses and restaurants from across the Bradford district.
"Increasingly, we are seeing new faces at our Curry Circle, and we need financial support to help us meet this growing demand. Businesses and individuals can make a donation of any size."
Sharron Lawrence, who has used the Curry Circle three times,said: "It is a lifeline for people in Bradford. The number of people coming to these are raising. It is really good and helpful if you are hungry and short of money."
Alam Zeb, kitchen manager at Cafe Lahore, said: "It is our community. We want to make sure we can help the community wherever possible.
"We are all human beings - tomorrow I might be in the same position. If we are able to, we should help."
Ian McMahon, 41, of Manningham, said he had been using the service for about ten weeks. He added: "It is great service, great people and it is nice to see the community get together. It is a nice thing they are doing.
"There are lots of people you don't usually see. It's a place where everyone comes - homeless, people fighting addiction, desperate people really - and it is probably the first meal they have had in a week."
Ali Campbell, 37, said: "I come here now and again and there is good food and good people. It is important - if you have no money or food, you have nothing."
Prolegis Solicitors, of Bradford, sponsored a Curry Circle. A spokesman said: "We are proud to be associated with the fantastic work that Muslim Women’s Council is doing, and are happy to work together to make a difference to the lives of the most vulnerable."
Provident Financial Group has sponsored a series of Curry Circle sessions. Sharon Orr, its community affairs manager, said: "The work that the team is doing at the Curry Circle provides an innovative service to the local community. They’ve found a positive way to integrate the community whilst offering a much-needed service in a safe and welcoming environment."
Anyone who wants donate or sponsor an event can contact Currycircle@muslimwomenscouncil.org.uk or ring (01274) 223230.