On October 22, Queen Mathilde of Belgium visited the Food Bank in Liège, Belgium, as well as the charitable organization "Accueil et Partage” which fights against hunger and social exclusion.
A visit to the warehouses, refrigerators and working meetings enabled the sovereign to explain the impact of the novel coronavirus epidemic on the food aid activity.
"There has been a net increase in demand, which is difficult to estimate because some people no longer came for fear of the coronavirus while new beneficiaries have arrived," detailed Mr. Nève, President of the Food Bank in Liège. "However, we consider that demand is increasing between 15 and 30% and this continues."
The demands could be met as the supply also increased, thanks to new donations. "We had an increase in supply of almost 50% during the first six months," said Mr. Nève. “We went from around 2,000 to 3,000 tonnes” of food to donate.
The Queen also visited the charity "Accueil et Partage", where she met three people receiving food aid.
The visit of the sovereign "pleases us because it shows her interest in food aid as such, which is sometimes seen as something degrading, of another age or paternalistic," said Mr. Nève. “It is sometimes said that we should replace food aid with vouchers, to give money rather than food. But that is to forget that food aid allows people to talk to people, to get into their problems. A voucher will never replace human contact, ”he said. “Food aid is the gateway to ending loneliness.”
Watch here the TV news about the visit of the Queen.
Original article here (in French).