People in Swindon are being urged to support the UK’s biggest food donation event this summer.
This year the Trussell Trust and FareShare are marking 10 years of working in partnership with Tesco to collect food donations in its larger supermarkets, such as the branch in Swindon's Ocotal Way.
With both charities reporting increasing need for food, those donations have never been more important.
The two charities have now put a call out for volunteers to help out at collection points in stores during the Tesco Food Collection, which runs from 30 June to 2 July.
Emma Revie, Trussell Trust CEO, said: “As the cost of living crisis continues to bite, millions of people are struggling to survive. We know that too many families will be forced to use a food bank over the coming months because they are unable to afford the essentials.
“Supporting the Tesco Food Collection this summer by volunteering could make all the difference to your Swindon food bank during this busy period. You could donate a couple of hours of time and volunteer during the collection or you could donate food to your local Tesco donation point. Please do get in touch to hear about volunteering opportunities.”
Lucy Bearn, Operations Director at FareShare South West, said: “The cost-of-living crisis is having a huge impact on thousands of families and our charities are telling us that demand for their services continues to grow as a result.
“That’s why the Tesco Summer Food Collection is so important. We would be hugely grateful to anyone who is able to volunteer at the Tesco Food Collection this summer to encourage more shoppers to donate much-needed food to FareShare, so we can continue to support those who need it most.”
During the collection, customers will be asked to donate long-life food to help food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network provide food parcels to people facing financial hardship, as well as to help FareShare in supporting frontline charities and community groups.
Volunteers are needed because they play a vital role in speaking to customers, encouraging them to donate, and helping them to choose items that are most-needed by Swindon food banks and charities. Tesco will top up all the food donated during the collection with an additional 20 percent cash donation to the charities to support them in their work.
Every can or packet donated will make a difference, with the Trussell Trust’s network of food bank centres reporting a 14 percent rise in food parcels handed out last year, while more than 75 percent of the charity and community groups supplied by FareShare are also reporting an increase in demand.
People can find more about the collection and sign up to volunteer by visiting https://fareshare.org.uk/foodcollection/ or www.trusselltrust.org/get-involved/tesco-food-collection/