SOUTH West’s food redistribution charity, FareShare South West, has revealed that they scaled their operations by six times from March 2020 – March 2021, delivering more food to frontline charities, schools and community groups across the South West region than ever before in the charity’s history.
The publication of FareShare South West’s annual impact report revealed that they redistributed enough food for a staggering 6.1 million meals in just a 12 month period. Much of the uplift in operations was as a result of the charity’s emergency food provision at key crisis points in the pandemic year, including their FoodStock 2020 campaign, which ran from November 2020 to March 2021, providing food at scale to frontline organisations, as well as ready-packed food parcels for smaller projects and initiatives.
CEO of FareShare South West, Julian Mines, said:
“The pandemic laid bare and exacerbated the issue of food poverty that we face here in the UK. In the early days of the pandemic, the need for food support soared, and our frontline partners – though having to operate in very different ways – saw huge demand for their services and an increased need to support users with food provisions. Though the health crisis may have abated, for now, food insecurity is still a daily reality for thousands of individuals and families across our region.
“Stepping up to deliver at this scale across the past year has not been without its challenges and has taken sleepless nights, hundreds of committed volunteers, a supportive community and a staff team I am so proud of. From launching emergency warehouses in Ashton Gate football stadium and bed depots to overhauling entire processes and establishing new partnerships with frontline charities in need of our food, the effort has been monumental. More importantly, the impact has been monumental. We’ve worked with 416 frontline charities, schools and community groups, and we estimate that our redistribution has saved our partners £5million in average retail value, with over 50,000 people benefitting from the food.”
The impact report also revealed that the redistribution of surplus food in 2020-2021 avoided 2,985 tonnes of CO2e emissions.
Julian Mines continued:
“With the emergency operations now over, we’re working hard to maintain high levels of food redistribution across the South West. We are determined to continue to be a safety net for this region. This will rely on securing more partnerships with local food businesses looking for ways to deal with their surplus that is good for both people and the planet. It will also mean further investment into our infrastructure, including new chiller vans, covering increased fuel costs and most exciting of all a new warehouse location in South Bristol.”
To read the full impact report and understand more about the work of FareShare South West across 2020-2021, please visit: https://faresharesouthwest.org.uk/our-impact-2020/
charitytoday.co.uk | 9 June 2021
An exciting new volunteering initiative that will help support the needs of residents in the Meadows area of Nottingham is set to be launched this month.
Local charities Notts County Foundation and the Bridges Community Trust have partnered with Meadows Community Helpers to enhance the amount of support available for local residents on a day-to-day basis.
The new scheme will be strengthened further thanks to a dedicated page on the HelpMyStreet website, which was established in 2020 by Nottinghamshire entrepreneur Mark Hawkins in order to assist individuals supporting their communities throughout the pandemic. Already established in the Ruddington area of Nottingham, HelpMyStreet aims to make volunteering and finding volunteers safe, simple and effective for everyone.
Sam Crawford, Head of Business Development at Notts County Foundation, said:
“Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, togetherness and local support have been vital in supporting communities through this unpredictable time. From assisting with weekly shopping to just having a conversation with someone who’s feeling lonely, the importance of helping others when and where possible cannot be underestimated.
“Notts County Foundation is proud to support the invaluable work of the Meadows Community Helpers, and we look forward to working alongside all of the selfless volunteers to help support as many people in the local community as possible.”
Mark Hawkins, Founder and Director of HelpMyStreet, said:
“I am really excited about this local project. The collaboration between three organisations who all understand and are passionate about the Meadows area of Nottingham should make the scheme a real success, and we are incredibly pleased to be able to provide the digital platform to bring this initiative to life.”
The platform will enable local residents to register as a volunteer and help match them with local requests for support, with tasks such as shopping for essentials, taking out bins, digital support or a friendly chat with those most isolated all being available.
Sarah Robertson, Community Engagement and Impact Manager at the Bridges Community Trust, said:
“This is a great project that showcases how local community organisations working collaboratively can really benefit our local area and the lives of residents. This platform is a great tool in bringing volunteers and local people in need of support together in a safe, organised and convenient way.
“Our community has done some great work during the pandemic, supporting those who are in need of additional assistance. HelpMyStreet will allow that work to continue within our community.”
The launch of this innovative new scheme in the Meadows area will help further the vital work carried out by the pre-existing Meadows Community Helpers since March 2020. It will also help expand the scale of support within the area.
Chris Henderson, a volunteer from Meadows Community Helpers, said:
“During 2020, the Meadows community did an incredible job of coming forward to support one another in the toughest periods of the pandemic. This new initiative will build on that amazing work and allow us to continue long after COVID-19 passes.”
For more information about Meadows Community Helpers, please visit https://www.helpmystreet.org/meadows-community-helpers.
charitytoday.co.uk | 6 June 2021
The staff at NHS Property Services has voted overwhelmingly in favour of Young Lives vs Cancer (formerly CLIC Sargent) as their new three-year charity partner.
The government-owned company, which helps the NHS get the most from its estate, will support the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people both financially and logistically.
Funds raised through the partnership with NHS Property Services will go towards Young Lives vs Cancer’s ‘Homes from Home’ service, providing a free place for families to stay when their child is going through cancer treatment. The charity has 10 Homes from Home close to specialist treatment centres in eight cities across the UK. These help families avoid the extra financial burdens of travel, accommodation and food costs. They also allow young cancer patients to be close to their loved ones, keeping the family together at a difficult time.
The NHS Property Services’ team will not only be taking on a whole host of fundraising challenges over the next three years, but they will also help Young Lives vs Cancer logistically through volunteer maintenance roles in the Homes from Home. As managers of one of the largest property portfolio in the UK, they will use their unrivalled depth of experience and breadth of skills to help keep the Homes from Home safe and fit for purpose for years to come.
Young cancer patients can often experience acute isolation during their treatment, which negatively affects their mental health. Young Lives vs Cancer social care teams will look to run peer-to-peer support group sessions, as well as one to one support for families, at space in NHS Property Services’ portfolio.
Head of High-Value Fundraising at Young Lives vs Cancer, Julie Millar said:
“We’re so grateful to everyone at NHS Property Services who voted for Young Lives vs Cancer as their new charity partner. Our Homes from Home provide a lifeline for families who face the crushing reality of a childhood cancer diagnosis. This three-year partnership will ensure that our Homes from Home can continue to run both during these challenging times and in the future, keeping young cancer patients and their families safe and supported during treatment.”
Deborah Prince, NHS Property Services Director of Customer Services and Communication, said that Young Lives vs Cancer is a perfect fit for the organisation:
“With 64 exceptional candidates all doing such great work, our frontline colleagues picked a partner that really resonated with them. We’re so excited to be working with the Young Lives vs. Cancer team to make a real difference to the lives of children and their families affected by cancer and we are incredibly proud to be supporting this work.”
Many children like five-year-old Emmett from Aylesbury have already benefitted hugely from staying in a Home from Home. Emmett was diagnosed with germ cell cancer in August 2018 and was physically sick a number of times every hour when he first started chemotherapy.
Staying in Young Lives vs Cancer’s Home from Home, CLIC Court in Oxford close to John Radcliffe Hospital, was hugely helpful for Emmett and his mum, Amy Scullard, who says,
“We were so thankful we were at the Home.”
Another parent supported by Young Lives vs Cancer, who stayed at Billy’s House in Nottingham close to Nottingham University Hospital, describes the real benefits of staying in a Home from Home:
“The other parents at the house were in similar situations and we would look out for each other, whether it was a shoulder to cry on, or sharing milk when you couldn’t get to the shop. And our children could play together without worrying about germs and illnesses that people outside of the cancer world don’t always understand.”
With only 19 specialist cancer treatment centres for young people in the UK, many families face frequent and gruelling journeys – on average 60 miles or more – to receive life-saving treatment their child needs. Treatment can last up to three years and families can face extra costs of £600 each month for travelling and food. Young Lives vs Cancer’s Homes from Home provide clean, safe and homely accommodation for families when they most need it, completely free.
For more information about Young Lives vs Cancer, visit younglivesvscancer.org.uk
charitytoday.co.uk | 6 June 2021