"The true spirit of Christmas" – that's what charity volunteers and colleagues at our Donnington Wood store said when seven-year-old George Jones used all the money he’d saved up in his piggy bank to buy supplies for the local food bank.
George put supplies worth a total of £19.26 in the trolley collecting for the Salvation Army's food bank in Telford – further topped up by a donation from his dad Andy – and the store’s community champion June Walker, who works closely with the charity, serving hot meals every week, explained to him what a difference his generosity would make.
June said: "George is an amazing little boy. He decided a few weeks ago he was going to spend his money on food for the food bank in Asda. George knew me from school and the local Beavers group and told me that he'd been to London with his parents and saw all the big houses and the expensive shops, but he also saw people sleeping in the doorways which was really sad and he wanted to do something to help.
"So he came to store to meet me to find out more and work out what he could buy with his savings
"I could see the pride in the face when the trolley was full – he couldn't believe how much he had managed to get. It was so nice to see.
"It was such a lovely act of kindness for someone so young. He could have spent his money on himself but he chose to spend it on others. It was really humbling.”
George goes to Lilleshall Primary School and is a member of Lilleshall and Muxton Beavers. He's met June through her work with the local community and when he's seen her as he joins his parents Emma and Andy when they shop at Asda each week.
As part of the Asda Fight Hunger Create Change programme we’re donating £20m to food charities FareShare and the Trussell Trust over three years and have permanent food collection points in all our larger stores.
June said: "Our customers here are so generous and always support our food bank. We have two trolleys out for the Oakengate Salvation Army and they are full every couple of days. Recently we'd filled 14 trollies in just just one week.
"I've been helping with Oakengate Salvation Army once a week for the past eight years serving hot meals so I know first hand what the donations mean to those on need."
As a surprise June called to see George at his school to give him a few treats, including some Lego, a toy Asda lorry, the Asda Christmas advert book and a new piggy bank.
June said: "I told his friends his story as they knew nothing they all cheered and gave him a big around of applause when they heard what he had done.
"I said that we couldn't let George's story go unrecognised and we needed to give him a special gift for his act of kindness and thinking of others at Christmas time. He was very overwhelmed with the attention. He's such a humble little boy and he reduced me to tears!"
George's mum Emma says she couldn't be more proud of him for thinking of others this Christmas.
She said: "George is such a caring and kind child who's more than happy to give his stuff up. At the end of the day he is a lovely human being and we are all so proud of him.
"After our trip to London we were chatting as a family about what we had seen and discussed what we could do to help. We wanted to do something positive.
"Then George went to get his piggy bank and said he wanted to use his pocket money to buy food for the homeless. The money was all in 1ps and 2ps which he'd collected over time and when we got to Asda we put all the change into the money machine and got £19.26.
"George loves using the scanner when he goes shopping at Asda and he used it when he went round with the trolley – he added it all up as he was going round.
"He got rice, pasta, tins of food etc but also some treats such as biscuits too. He was surprised by how much he managed to buy. He was really proud of himself.
"June was lovely with him. She is such a lovely, bubbly lady with a heart of gold. She told George where his food he had bought would go and he was walking a bit taller when he left the store!"
Glenys Turley, of the Salvation Army, says George's gesture shows "the true spirit of Christmas".
She said: "It is really lovely of a child as young as George to do something like that. It shows that he's had a good upbringing and is caring to others.
"Asda Donnington and June, in particular, help us so much with other collections. Without them I think we would really struggle."