Resistance Kitchen Update – Week 38

It was another busy week at the Resistance Kitchen. We are seeing many new faces each week now, and yet our regulars are still here. Clearly their situation hasn’t improved, they are still in need. This is an indication that things are getting worse by the day.

Fuel Poverty

When we were setting up the gazebo for the food drive,  a woman came and asked for some money to top up her electricity meter. Food kitchens focus on food poverty, but all poverty is interconnected. People are forced to juggle between eating and heating. Our last survey revealed that 1 in 3 of our guests don’t have access to a fridge, 1 in 5 don’t have access to a cooker or microwave, and 1 in 10 don’t even have the means to heat water for a cup of tea – it all requires electricity or gas.  

A Nottingham University study this week shows that the government metrics for measuring fuel poverty are purposely wrong,  designed to hide the fact that fuel poverty is actually 2.5x higher than government statistics would have you believe. Since austerity was unleashed they changed how fuel poverty is defined, they are now measuring fuel poverty by the energy efficiency of the house rather than the occupants financial situation! This renders this year’s pre-election announcement, that people’s condition will improve as the fuel cap will drop by 15% from April, meaningless. The reality is that the average household energy bill has shot up from pre-pandemic of £1,308 in 2019 to £2,592 last year (2023). The government rather than tackle the problem it has created, are busy hiding it, and pretending it’s getting better (the official stats would have you believing that fuel poverty has dropped from 13.2% to 13% over the last 3 years).

No Voice

Vulnerable communities suffering under this deceit, like those we serve at our kitchen, have no voice in the halls of power.

At the 2010 general election which ushered in austerity, there was a gaping 23 percentage points gap between the turnout of the richest and poorest income groups. A House Of Commons research briefing from Nov 2022 shows that ethnic minorities and poor people are less likely registered to vote, let alone actually vote. And a University of Essex study found that the rise in Islamophobia alienates Muslims from voting. The reasons for not voting include the lack of real choice between political parties. We see todays Labour party competing with the Tories in their attacks on the welfare system, on marginalised communities, suppoting Islamophobia here and genocide in Gaza.

Voter Registration Drive

There are several grassroots organisations trying to remedy this situation on the local level. The first step is to get our community registered to vote, so that they have a voice at the coming elections.

We were so pleased when a newly formed local group Croydon4Palestine approached us to help them in their voter registration drive. Sonja from Croydon4Palestine graciously came to our kitchen this week to help us. Armed with a tablet, she kindly showed our guests how to registered to vote using the online form. The response was fantastic, so many guests approached her with great interest. This is the link for their registration programme:

InshAllah she will also be here next week, please bring your National Insurance NI number with you (it will be on your benefits statement or pay slip) as that’s needed to register.

You have nothing to lose in registering to vote, it’s your right – dont let them take your vote away and silence you. You don’t need to be a British citizen to vote, if you are from a Commonwealth country living in the UK you can vote in UK elections, and also EU citizens residing in the UK can vote in some elections. You can check your eligibility to vote using this simple 2-click tool:

And don’t worry that there is no real choice right now between Labour and Tory candidates, other groups are looking at standing an independent anti-austerity, pro-justice, pro-Palestine candidate locally. We saw George Galloway win in Rochdale, he got more votes than all the main parties put together. Independent candidates can beat the main parties. But the first step is to register to vote, focus on that for now… remember to bring your NI number.


With no food or water left in Gaza, the genocide being perpetrated by Israel, with the backing of our government, has entered the starvation phase where children are being starved to death. It is imperative for all organisations fighting hunger, like the Resistance Kitchen, to speak up and be the voice of the starved in Gaza.

This week we introduced two new displays to educate the community, and condemn both the government and the ‘opposition’ Labour party for their complicity in green lighting the slaughter of children through the weapon of hunger.

Gaza is Thirsty

A design by an unknown artist (Face Us If You Dare) depicting an outline of a child clinging with both hands to an empty water tap, was used with a quote from UNICEF:

“Barely a drop of safe drinking water is left in Gaza… Babies are slowly perishing under the world’s gaze”
~ United Nations Children’s Fund UNICEF 

This was counter positioned with two quotes from the Prime Minister and the leader of the opposition, under the title Don’t Vote Genocide:

“Israel has the right” to withhold power and water from Palestinian civilians. ~ Kier Starmer, Labour Leader 11 Oct 23

Calling for Gaza ceasefire now “not in anyone’s interest” – Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister 21 Feb 24


Israel is using starvation as a weapon of war against Gaza civilians ~ Oxfam

Our second display feature the tragic death of Yazan Kafarneh. 10 years old Yazan Kafarneh was one of the first children to die of starvation in Gaza. Suffering from cerebral palsy meant he needed a soft, high nutrient diet, like eggs and bananas – his favourite, which became impossible to source. He died of starvation on 4th March 2024 at the al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah.

The day after Yazan died, the United Nations Children’s Fund UNICEF stated in its Palestine Humanitarian Situation report that the babies of thousands of women “who are due to give birth in the next month in the Gaza Strip are at risk of dying”.

Already dozens more children have died of hunger ( 25 as of 10/3/24).

We chose not to include the more graphic photos of Yazan’s skeleton body, but even those we showed are heartbreaking. The photo on Yazan’s fathers mobile phone, shows Yazan smiling one week before the genocide started.

Families are eating leaves and scraps left by rats, in desperate attempt to stay alive ~ Save The Children

The United Nations Human Rights Council has condemned Israel:

“Israel has been intentionally starving the Palestinian people in Gaza since 8 October. Now it is targeting civilians seeking humanitarian aid and humanitarian convoys”

~United Nations Human Rights Council

But the failure is ours…

“What we are witnessing in Gaza is a mass killing of children in slow motion because there is no food left and nothing getting to them. They are dying because the world has failed to protect them” ~ Save The Children

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