‘We’ve been blown away by it’ - charity helping feed Norwich’s most vulnerable people amazed by schools’ harvest collections
Bosses of a charity helping to feed some of the city’s most vulnerable people have been “blown away” by how Norwich schoolchildren have responded to an appeal for them to donate food through harvest collections.
Norwich Foodbank is gearing up to feed 5,000 people in the city who are struggling to put food on the table and managers hailed schools and organisations which have so far organised harvest collections of donations.
Among the young people who have collected tins, bags, boxes and jars of food are students at The Hewett School in Norwich.
They have built up a mountain of donations at The Base community and family resource centre, which is next to the Cecil Road school.
Karen Howes, activities co-ordinator at The Base, said: “We have been a collection point for the Norwich Foodbank for some time and we thought, come harvest time, it would be good to make contact with the school about it.
“The children, especially Year Seven, were well up for it and we have had piles and piles. There are tins of haggis in there and all sorts.
“It’s been good because, as well as collecting for the foodbank, it’s been the first time some of the students have been over here to find out what we are all about.”
Norwich Foodbank was set up in October 2010 and gives out more than three-and-a-half tonnes of food each month. The Norwich Evening News launched our Fill the Foodbank campaign in October 2011, after government figures showed a shocking 30,000 people in the Greater Norwich area live on the edge of poverty.
The charity, which now has 10 distribution centres, recently issued a “harvest pack” for people looking to donate. Project manager Grant Habershon hailed the “fantastic” donation from The Base and said the charity was amazed at how schools had responded to the appeal for harvest collections.
He said: “There’s a growing need for the foodbank in Norwich and what is amazing is that, at harvest time, so many schools have got involved.
“We have been going into schools and doing about three harvest assemblies each week. A lot of the schools taking part have said the collections are much bigger than they expected.
“We’ve been blown away by it. Sure, there’s a debate on why foodbanks are needed in this day and age, but the support we are getting has been amazing.
“The Base always does good work for us and we are very grateful to them and to everyone helping us out.”
The charity’s harvest packs are available from www.norwichfoodbank.co.uk, or for more information email email@example.com or call 01603 251733.