Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 15.43.04A HUMAN rights group based in Middlesbrough – organised by a number of asylum seekers – has handed over cash raised for a local food bank.

Newport Settlement’s community food bank received £100 for food and sanitary products from members of Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) International Middlesbrough.

The cash was raised by ROHR through a Christmas event at Teesside University’s Tower Building at the end of November.

Local branch treasurer Xoliso Sithole, a 45-year-old asylum seeker from Zimbabwe who lives in the Newport ward, said: “We have a branch here in Middlesbrough and I sat down with my colleagues and we thought of doing some fundraising and wanted to do something for the Newport Settlement Food Bank.

“There are people who are destitute – some of the stories are so painful, the way they have no clothes, no food.

“We can help those people, perhaps try to buy some tinned food as Christmas is approaching.

“We are keen to do these things and we are going to do more but first we said let’s do something for the food bank.”

Other money raised at the ROHR Christmas event will be distributed to other charities and good causes.

Accepting the donation on behalf of the Newport Settlement Food Bank was the centre’s resource worker Alma Dennison and Cllr Tracy Harvey, who represents the Newport Ward.

Cllr Harvey said: “I have got to know members of ROHR well recently and they have a fantastic community spirit shown not only by this but by the local litter picking group we set up recently.

“The tagline of their fundraising event was ‘food is a right to every human being’ and I couldn’t agree more. It is a tragedy of our society that so many rely on food banks, but while there is a need we must all do as much as we can to make sure no-one goes hungry at any time of the year, let alone Christmas.”

Requests for vouchers for the Newport Settlement Food Bank can be made at the community centre on St Pauls Road, alternatively those in need can contact Cllrs Tracy Harvey, Bob Brady and Alma Hellaoui by email, telephone or at their ward surgeries.

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