Cerys Gordon shares her thoughts on the food parcel provided to her during isolation and suggests what more can be done to help those in university accommodation
This has been a difficult year for all of us but it has proved especially difficult for first year students at university. Getting a positive COVID-19 test back is not what any student wants to hear and there is a looming worry of how students will access necessities including food.
When my flatmates and I received our positive COVID-19 tests it was such a shock and we also became very worried of how we would get things like food. We told the university about our positive test and were informed that we were eligible for a free food and drinks package. This was a huge relief and we applied for it immediately.
The box came straight to our door within a day and it supplied meals and essentials for both vegetarians and meat eaters. Luckily, we already had some food supplies and therefore we did not have to apply for a second box. However, it is possible to apply for more if needed which was always reassuring for us.
You can report your positive COVID test here, and all support will be offered on this page once you have completed the form. My flat, as first years, were very happy with the amount and variety of food that was provided. I would say it was enough to last three of us around 5 days. Therefore, if you had no food at all upon receiving a positive test result where then you would likely have to apply for another one, but the process is simple and straightforward.
The highly anticipated food and drinks package contained four tins of tomato soup, five curry pot noodles, one loaf of bread, a few mini cereals, a pack of butter, two packs of Haribo, multiple freezer halal meals, three large Chicago Town pizzas, a carton of orange juice and a bottle of milk. As a flat we were quite happy with this selection, as I am a vegetarian and they gave us an equal amount of supplies for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. We finished all the food in the end, and the only things that weren’t eaten were the freezer meals. We simply did not eat them as we had other meals which we preferred to eat and they are still in our freezer to this day!
Overall, my flat mates and I were impressed with the food packages as they gave us a great selection of snacks, meals and drinks. However, we thought there could be more of a selection of fruit and veg, but since the boxes are pre-packed, this may have not been possible. All in all, we were happy with the food box delivered to us in order to support us through isolation. However, we still think the university could do more to support students’ mental health at such a difficult time.
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