Pulcherie Mboussi, executive director of Issamba Centre, holds one of 100 Christmas hampers going out to families. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Pulcherie Mboussi, executive director of Issamba Centre, holds one of 100 Christmas hampers going out to families. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

‘Small but mighty team’ provides Christmas hampers to Greater Victoria’s African-Caribbean community

Without volunteers, Issamba Centre hustles to provide emergency hampers

More than 100 Greater Victoria families in need will have food for Christmas this year thanks to the Issamba Centre.

The non-profit hub for African, Caribbean diaspora and African descent communities of Vancouver Island is providing 100 emergency Christmas hampers for African descent families in need of some help over the holidays.

“It’s just a way to make sure they know they are not forgotten,” says Pulcherie Mboussi, executive director of Issamba Centre. “Black communities and people of African descent, often feel they are left behind. So we are here supporting them.”

READ ALSO:Oak Bay students show pandemic poise for Santa visit

With the pandemic limiting volunteers, the food baskets, which include culturally relevant food basics, are being prepared by a “small but mighty team” of two staff and three volunteers.

The La Teranga food baskets program launched in August with a goal to feed 120 families over 12 weeks, but within two weeks, more than 150 had registered.

“Black communities are 3.5 times more likely to experience food insecurity,” Mboussi says. “We are thankful for the support from the Government of Canada and Canadian Red Cross, as well as the numerous individuals, community organizations, and businesses that have extended this program from what was only supposed to be 12 weeks.”

Those in need of assistance can register online. Hampers will be ready for pick-up on Dec. 23 from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: nina.grossman@blackpress.ca. Follow us on Instagram.
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