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Queen Rania meets volunteers of Family Kitchen food bank

By JT - Dec 03,2012 - Last updated at Dec 03,2012

AMMAN — Her Majesty Queen Rania on Monday met with the founding members of Family Kitchen and a group of volunteers from the organisation, which packages and redistributes surplus foods from five-star hotels, restaurants and bakeries to underprivileged families.

The Family Kitchen representatives, including group founders Bandar Al Sharif and Jacqueline Scott, briefed Her Majesty on the Family Kitchen initiative, its inception, current activities and future plans.

The Family Kitchen — which works in collaboration with nine five-star hotels, restaurants and bakeries — currently operates in Amman, Mafraq, Madaba, Zarqa and Balqa, but aims to cover all the Kingdom’s governorates in the future, according to a statement released by the Queen’s office.

The initiative, which is run by local volunteers, started in 2009 by collecting surplus, uneaten food from restaurants during the holy month of Ramadan and distributing it to the poor as packaged iftar meals, but now distributes food all year-round.

Ramadan 2009 saw the distribution of around 2,990 meals, while in 2012 Family Kitchen distributed around 32,000 meals during the holy month and an estimated 74,000 meals throughout the year, the statement said.

The initiative follows strict hygienic standards when collecting, storing and redistributing the food items, making sure that the poor receive meals that are of the highest standard.

According to the Family Kitchen, one of its goals is to give the poor access to the same food that the rich eat. The beneficiaries can also choose what kinds of food they want.

The project targets specific families in underprivileged neighbourhoods with a focus on children, working in collaboration with local charitable societies and centres. Beneficiaries are selected without religious or ethnic background discrimination.

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