Food bank appeal sees over 30,000 items donated in less than two weeks to help those impacted by the Coronavirus in Cambridgeshire
Kind-hearted communities have donated over 30,000 items to an urgent food bank appeal in less than two weeks to help those impacted by Coronavirus in Cambridgeshire
Central England Co-op launched the campaign after its food bank partners revealed they had seen donations drop and demand risk.
However, despite the amazing community response to the appeal, food banks have pleaded with people to continue to donate vital items as supplies continue to remain low and demand continues to rise by the day.
On average, food banks are seeing a 50% fall in donations coupled with a 100% rise in requests for food parcels with new enquiries coming from people who are self isolating, self employed and families who have children that would normally be getting free school meals.
Food banks being supported by this appeal in Cambridgeshire include Cambridge City Food bank, Peterborough Food bank and Yaxley Food bank.
Debbie Robinson, Central England Co-op Chief Executive, said: “Our communities continue to do us proud and support this vital food bank appeal.
“Our food bank partners are working around the clock to react to a rise in demand and we can all support in our own little way by donating an item or two so they can carry on their great work during these uncertain times.”
Items needed for the food bank appeal include cereal, tinned food and fruit, tea bags, dried pasta, rice, long life milk, sugar, biscuits, fruit juice and squash, pasta sauce and instant coffee.
Donations will be collected up from Central England Co-op stores and used to create food parcels, which contain around 11 items and will provide at least three days’ worth of meals for those in need.
Juliet Welch, from Peterborough Food Bank, said: “In this current situation it has been heart-warming to see how our local communities pull together to ensure that others who need food can get it.
“As most of our volunteers were in the elderly/vulnerable category we have seen a great response to our need for volunteers to keep the food bank centres open and we have been pleased to see food donations starting to come back again, but would love to encourage more as we feel we are only at the start of a long journey.
“We have also been encouraged by more monetary donations from those who are unable to shop or travel enabling us to buy the food instead.”
People can keep up to date with how Central England Co-op is responding to the Coronavirus by visiting www.centralengland.coop/updates
Notes to editors
Picture caption: Central England Co-op are working with food banks partners to try and boost donations.
About Central England Co-operative
Central England Co-operative is one of the largest independent retail co-operative societies in the UK with interests in food, funeral, floral, travel and property investment.
Co-operatives have always been there for their communities; they were formed to protect them and help them flourish.
Our 7,900 colleagues who serve Members and customers work hard to ensure that co-operative values, principles and spirit flow through everything we do to help support and improve our local communities.
Owned by hundreds of thousands of Members, we have over 430 trading outlets across 16 counties including West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.
We are proud of our reputation for ethical business practices and corporate responsibility.
We invest a percentage of our trading profit into local communities through our Community Dividend Fund scheme, have donated over £1.3 million to our corporate charity partner Dementia UK and also operate a pioneering food redistribution partnership with FareShare Midlands so unsold food goes to those in need.
Visit www.centralengland.coop for more information or follow us on Facebook or Twitter using @mycoopfood
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