DEFINITION : Mutual aid is “cooperation for the sake of the common good.”
It’s getting people to come together to meet each other’s needs, recognising that as humans, our survival is dependent on one another
Dollis Hill is a relatively small Mutual Aid group, but as we know small is beautiful. Dudden Hill Mutual Aid helped us initially and Rob Harrison from St Catherine’s Church was pivotal in working with local volunteers to respond to the community's needs.
We organised leaflets to be distributed to every flat and house in Dollis Hill, and followed up via phone where applicable. We had an excellent response to the leaflets, with as many volunteers offering to help as those requesting help. Our loyal and steady group of volunteers have responded to residents’ requests to shop and deliver, to collect prescriptions and other provisions. The volunteers provide support to those who cannot leave their homes, and those who are desperate and lacking means.
We have worked with Sufra food bank, Daksha’s Community Response Kitchen, the Mutual Aid Willesden Food, and Compassionate Kitchens to supply our residents with either hot food or groceries. Emad Al Ebadi and the Iraqi Welfare Association, based in Dollis Hill, in association with AMAFHH Investments also played their part through their ‘Urgent Food Drive Campaign’ distributing large bags of fruit, vegetables and other treats, which were all very well received by residents. These organisations were invaluable, and we know that the visits from our volunteers were as welcome as the provision so, really appreciative of all the help.
The Dollis Hill Mutual Aid group really makes you feel proud to be part of a community. There is a culture of good cheer and helpfulness.
Looking towards the future of our group, we would like to continue in the same positive attitude and to work to support vulnerable people in the community. We are also hoping to have a celebration in Gladstone Park in the autumn to thank all the volunteers.