Help sought for big festive food collection

Volunteers wanted for UKs biggest Christmas food collection.
Volunteers wanted for UKs biggest Christmas food collection.

Kind-hearted volunteers are being sought in Mid & East Antrim to help with a nationwide food collection to help people in need this Christmas.

Leading food charities FareShare and The Trussell Trust are looking for members of the public to help man donation points at larger Tesco stores from Thursday, November 30, to Saturday, December 2, as part of the Tesco Food Collection.

The annual collection will see Tesco customers encouraged to donate long-life food to help foodbanks and community groups support people in need this Christmas. Tesco will top up customer donations by 20 per cent to further support the two charities in their work.

Last year, 3.4 million meals were collected in the Tesco Food Collection, and since the launch in 2012, more than 46 million meals have been donated to the two charities by generous Tesco customers.

To make this year’s collection a success, volunteers are needed to hand out shopping lists to customers, so they can see the food items needed by foodbanks and community groups in their area, and to answer questions customers have.

Samantha Stapley, Operations Manager for The Trussell Trust said: “Foodbanks across the country will be doing all they can to provide emergency support so people don’t go hungry this Christmas, but to make sure everyone referred receives vital help our network needs your support.

The more people volunteering with foodbanks at the Food Collection, the more food will be collected from generous shoppers, and the better prepared foodbanks will be for their busiest time of year.”

Lindsay Boswell, FareShare CEO said: “Volunteers collect an average of 600 meals per shift, so we really can’t overestimate how important their contribution is. If you can spare an hour or so to volunteer in your local store this December, please do, and please encourage your friends, family and colleagues to get involved as well. You’ll be making an enormous difference.”

Tony McElroy, Tesco’s Head of Communications in Northern Ireland said: “Together we can make a real difference this Christmas through Tesco’s Food Collection scheme. Our customers have been incredibly generous in recent years and with the help of volunteers we hope to collect even more this year to support those who really need it.”

People can find out about local stores supporting FareShare and sign up to volunteer at www.fareshare.org.uk/food-collection

People can find out about local stores supporting Trussell Trust and sign up to volunteer at www.trusselltrust.org/food-collection-volunteer