Yvonne Simms reflects on her Christian faith that provided the miracles she and her volunteers needed to stay safe through COVID-19.
Yvonne Simms and her husband Martin have run the Salford Food Parcels Project for over a decade; however, these last 12 months have brought enormous challenges. These challenges could have prevented them from providing emergency food parcels in their community; however, Yvonne and Martin have a strong Christian Faith; thus, Yvonne prayed for miracles to help them meet the challenge of COVID-19.
COVID-19 may have a grip on us; however, little miracles occurred after God answered her prayers amid the pandemic. God heard her prayers mercifully, and Salford Food Parcels could continue its vital work. Subsequently, these miracles combined with their Christian faith now give them greater hopes for the future.
Yvonne Simms; my Christian faith and God’s miracles.
This last year has been like no other; sadly, we have seen family and friends die or become affected by COVID-19. No one of our generations has ever faced a pandemic like the one we are just coming out of; thus, no one knew how to fight it and stop its deadly wave across our country. As a Christian, I first felt afraid. However, I knew it was vital to keep Salford Food Parcels going because many people struggled due to isolation, lack of work or were now on furlough. So, I prayed because my husband and I are both over 70 years old; we are part of the vulnerable group that COVID-19 attacked without mercy.
‘My Christian faith is important to me, and it is a massive part of my life. I know the power of prayer, and I know that God listens and understands why I ask from him.’Yvonne Simms
I prayed that my Father God would keep my husband and me safe from COVID-19 as we continued providing food for those in poverty needed. However, I was scared because if we caught COVID-19, it would have killed us or put us in the hospital, mainly because our age meant we were both in a vulnerable group. I was also scared for our volunteers because they kindly dedicated themselves to helping us throughout the pandemic, so I drew upon my Christian faith and prayed for them to be kept safe from COVID-19.
My Christian faith brought additional funds from grants to buy more food.
COVID-19 meant we needed more shopping and the food needed collecting from the charities that donated it to us. Also, we needed to give the food out as the number of people attending Salford Food Parcels for food grew; subsequently, the demand for emergency food parcels and home deliveries grew.
We are a small organisation relying on grants and donations, and I constantly worry that we won’t have enough money to do what needs doing. Miraculously, God’s miracles gave us more grants and gifts; therefore, we could cover the additional food cost.
The miracle of volunteers and a baby inspired women to join together and knit.
Another miracle came as more new volunteers appeared. We had been looking for more volunteers to help us, and thankfully Mark and Chelsea came forward when we needed them most. Sadly, one of our regular volunteers could not help due to the early birth arrival. She had a beautiful little boy who had to spend the first 21 weeks of his life in hospital; his early arrival made us launch the ‘Knitting for Babies’ campaign.
We launched this campaign because of the shortage of wool and baby clothes during the pandemic. Subsequently, this resulted in a team of ‘ladies who knit’ women coming together to knit to keep our babies warm.
Now, our beautiful little boy is one year old, and he’s made enormous progress. He is a happy little boy who has come through so much, but always with a smile. He is a true God miracle, and I thank God daily for keeping him and his family safe.
Our young volunteers give me hope for the future.
We also had the much-needed support of our volunteers, Izzy, Amy, Anna, and Louis, all university and college students. These fantastic young people came to visit us at our site, and they stayed to help with the sessions by helping to give the food out and make up the emergency food parcels.
Thankfully, they have faithfully continued to attend every week during the pandemic. Our volunteers make me hopeful for the future; their kindness and compassion are lovely to witness, and the world is a better place because of them.
God heard my prayers and kept us safe.
Another miracle is throughout the three lockdowns, two big ones and one little one, none of us in the group has been ill with COVID-19. A couple of us have had to isolate ourselves because we were in contact with someone else who had it; still, none of us has had the illness. That is a true God miracle! Others around us have had it; sadly, some died, but the team has worked through it; it is a miracle indeed.
This miracle, to me, is the miracle of how God has heard my prayers. Thankfully, God did answer them as I prayed for protection, allowing us to continue to provide emergency food parcels to those that needed them. God gave scientists the necessary skills to develop the vaccines and tests to beat COVID-19. After all, this is a disease that, 15 months ago, no one knew anything about.
The scientists’ miracles of the medicines and equipment they developed mean we are now more potent in the fight against COVID-19. Many of these scientists and medical staff have worked tirelessly to develop these vaccines; consequently, thanks to them, medical staff can now treat people more effectively for COVID-19. Most importantly, it means that fewer people are now dying.
These miracles from my Christian faith bring hope for the future…
I have hope for the future because we will recover as a country, as we have recovered in the past. I hope those who have lost their jobs will find new ones and start new businesses. Finally, I pray that many existing and affected companies will begin to recover. We will continue learning how to deal with this pandemic, to keep the vulnerable safe, and subsequently, we will help the world heal.
Most importantly, I thank God for the nursing staff’s skills and the scientists’ knowledge of those who helped each other. Many people have listened and isolated when needed; they stayed at home and followed the guidelines; subsequently, these people, who had love and compassion for each other, now enable us to move towards our future.
Salford Food Parcels support families in our community
Yvonne Simms is an Ambassador for Verve Recruitment, and we have worked together for nearly two years. Yvonne and Martin are dedicated to supporting vulnerable families in Salford and have continued to provide emergency food parcels for families in need.
The Salford Food Parcels operates from donations and grants; however, as COVID-19 continues, the food parcels’ demand will grow. Thankfully, God’s miracles have meant that vital funding has been getting to them, and subsequently, they have supported more people than ever before.
We will come back to you, and they will assist you wherever possible. More importantly, if they can’t help you because you are too far away from them, they will endeavour to find an alternative food bank in your area. If you would like to donate or volunteer, please get in touch; alternatively, if you could knit for us, that would be gratefully received. Please complete the form below, and I will contact you back.