I was thrilled when I learned that we were going to be working closely with our local foodbanks through the Asda Fight Hunger Create Change initiative.
My store's local foodbank, The Penryn and Falmouth foodbank, founded by The Trussell Trust and based at the Highway Community Centre in Penryn, has had their two homemade donated collection boxes in our store for years.
I'd heard what great work they do for our local people, but our new initiative gave me the impetus to get more directly involved and within weeks of Asda’s announcement I was meeting Brad Osman and the manger, Ruth Painter, as well as her amazing team at the foodbank.
The experience of witnessing what goes on, all that is provided and the dedication of the regular volunteers was just breathtaking. My eyes were opened, my sleeves were rolled up, and for the past few months now I've been helping the volunteers here.
It’s certainly hard work. Not just with the physical lifting and sorting of food donations but also with the other support the foodbank gives. Not only will Ruth and her team provide food enough for three days and for as many as in the house needs it, they also offer advice, support, a shoulder to cry on and a comforting cuppa and biscuit as they wait.
The local news reports regularly of business closures, job losses and accidents, so there’s no doubt that there will be even busier times ahead – and everyone tells me Asda’s support has come at a much needed time.
Ruth, Brad and all of these lovely people have welcomed me in and I feel so thankful to be a part of it all. They are as excited by the collaboration between the foodbank and Asda as I am and I’m looking forward to the initiatives ahead.
Ruth Painter, the foodbank manager, writes:
Asda's help has been great because we're reliant on donations to keep going. There's a strong need for a foodbank locally – we're a lifeline for people.
We're not just about food; users can talk to us confidentially and we can put them in touch with agencies who can help them.
Lisa's been great. She's generally been mucking in and helping us sort, pack and prepare the food boxes to give out. She's very enthusiastic and we really appreciate her support.