A big thank you to everyone who's supporting the Asda Fight Hunger Create Change programme.
Here's Sandra Deakins, the community champion at our Pudsey store, at one of the collections points we've got in more than 300 of our larger stores across the country. This week, we’re trying to increase donations to local food banks ahead of the summer holidays, when research shows that referrals increase dramatically.
It's all part of our initiative with FareShare and The Trussell Trust as we invest at least £20m to provide a million people with the food and support they need to help them out of the situation they are in.
Our partnership, which is funded in part by sales of our Bags for Life, is enabling FareShare and The Trussell Trust to develop their infrastructure and expand their teams so they can transport and store more fresh food, work with more local food charities and address the longer-term issues causing peole to turn to them for help. You can read more about the difference our investment is making to their work here.
Our community champions work closely with their local food banks – volunteering their time, organising permanent collect points in the stores and supporting fundraising initiatives. Here are a few examples of how they're getting behind the collection drive across the country:
Amanda Clegg, community champion at our Halifax store, says there's lots of support for our initiative from customers.
She said: "We had an awesome day talking to our customers about the Asda Fight Hunger Create Change programme. Shoppers of all ages donated items to the food bank collection trolley. Even little shoppers Phoebe and Gilligan popped in some tins of spaghetti."
Our Gosforth store's community champion Michelle Castledine works closely with Newcastle West End Food Bank. She said: "Our store's food donation trolley is full every week thanks to our amazing customers. On the 12th and 13th July volunteers from the food bank are holding a collection day in store. If you are interested in being a volunteer or just want to know how the food bank operates please pop along to store between 10am and 4pm. All donations are welcome too!"
Vicky O'Rourke from our Cardiff Bay store welcomed volunteers from Cardiff Foodbank to raise awareness of their work:
Geoff Brown, the community champion at our Kingswood store in Hull, has set up a collection point in the store. He said: "We have two food drives this month instore on the 13th and 27th. We are asking for your support to fill as many trolleys as we can for our local Trussell Trust food bank. Let's help stock them up and support this great cause."
Our Pwllheli store's community champion Jo Scott works closely with the team at Banc Bwyd Pwllheli Foodbank – here she is delivering some of the essential supplies they needed:
Jo said: "We received an urgent request for tinned goods for our local Banc Bwyd Pwllheli Foodbank as there has been an increase in a food bank users and stocks were getting low ... so off I went with a bag full of tinned goods to St Peter's Church.
"Thank you so much to our customers and colleagues for their generosity in giving to Banc Bwyd Pwllheli Foodbank. We held a collection day and there will be another donation day and awareness day later this month with more volunteers."
Hannah Dunn, the community champion at our Worcester store, welcomed some of the fantastic team from Worcester Foodbank. She said: "Thank you to all our customers for their support – it was a massive success."
Our St Austell store's manager Rick Rawle and community champion Emma Riley teamed up with St Austell Food Bank manager Jon Langford to support the programme.
Emma said: "The food bank are in store for a two-day food drive. It's great to be working with them and we're really proud to say that their collection point will remain in store permanently after this event."
And here's Louise Gibson, the community champion at our Darlington store, with King's Church Food Bank managers Caroline and Andrew.
Louise said: "The food bank services two locations in Darlington and need to replenish donations to cover the greater demand over the summer period."