'Divine' cooking as Hartlepool Muslim community group serves up over 2,000 meals to people in need during pandemic

A Musllim community group in Hartlepool has made over 2,000 meals for those in need during the pandemic.

Wednesday, 26th August 2020, 6:00 am

Members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community at Hartlepool’s Nasir Mosque have been helping St Aidan’s Church by providing cooked food for the homeless and those in need over the last few months.

They have made over 2,000 meals so far and also used their culinary skills to keep hardworking NHS staff fed at the University Hospital of North Tees.

Tahir Selby, Imam of the Nasir Mosque, in Brougham Terrace, said: “I am very pleased that our members have been helping the local community during these difficult times.

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Members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Hartlepool with Reverend Gemma Sampson of St Aidan's Church.

“We have cooked food for the staff of North Tees hospital as we appreciate all the hard and brave work that they are doing.

"We have also been collecting food and other items for the Hartlepool Foodbank and due to having a very close relationship with St Aidan’s Church, we are very pleased that we can help them.”

Every Thursday, members cook in excess of 100 meals and take it to St Aidan’s Church who then distribute it to anybody in need.

Mr Selby added: “It is important for us to help out, but we have also been touched by the kind response that many have mentioned.

The group have made over 2,000 prepared meals for people in need across Hartlepool and the NHS since lockdown.

"It is not just the homeless, everyone is finding it difficult, therefore any little thing that we can do, we are more than happy to do so within our means.”

He said they plan to continue the service for as long as possible.

One woman said after trying the group’s chicken spicy pasta for the first time: “I have to say for someone who isn’t a fan of spicy food or even pasta; I can take it or leave it.

"Anyway, I ate the whole bowl and it was absolutely beautiful. Well done all involved in the prep, cooking and delivery. It was divine.”

Along with churches, the mosque was forced to suspend services during the coronavirus lockdown.

Mr Selby added: “Our religion informs us to serve society by helping mankind.

"These times have brought everyone together and we look forward to continuing to help out, wherever the need is.”

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