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Leek Foodbank receives £10,000 donation

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: April 11, 2014

By Leslie Jackson

Pictured l-r are Bob Eaton and Andrea Riley of Leek and District Foodbank, Karen Sloan and Linda Burrows of PH Jones, Ian Smith project co-ordinator, trustee Liz Green, Nick Grubb head of Yours Moorlands and Barbara Ryan, trustee, at the cheque presentation last week

Pictured l-r are Bob Eaton and Andrea Riley of Leek and District Foodbank, Karen Sloan and Linda Burrows of PH Jones, Ian Smith project co-ordinator, trustee Liz Green, Nick Grubb head of Yours Moorlands and Barbara Ryan, trustee, at the cheque presentation last week

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A town foodbank has become financially sustainable for the next two years after receiving a surprise £10,000 donation.

Leek and District Foodbank, which operates out of Leek Pentecostal Church in West Street, is a joint community venture hosted by Leek and District Churches Together.

Since opening its doors on June 18, 2013, more than 1,000 people have been helped by its volunteers.

Now the group has been presented with a donation of £10,000 by PH Jones gas services and repair contractors, from Runcorn in Cheshire.

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The company is the gas contractor for social housing group Your Moorlands, which is part of Your Housing Group.

Head of Your Moorlands, Nick Grubb, said: "As a business we encourage our contractors to take part in the community. This makes them feel part of the community they are working in. PH Jones said they thought they would like to contribute to the town's foodbank. This is a generous offer by the company and will provide volunteers with uniforms and help with running costs."

Gavin McAlister, community project officer for Your Moorlands, said it gives out many vouchers to people to enable them to use at the foodbank.

He said: "We have seen problems where people have got a job, but are not paid for a month. During this time they are not receiving benefits and have no money to buy food.

"A lot of people are struggling at this time. It has been a humbling experience to have played a small part in helping people. We know the challenges people face and they are fearful. Over the last year we have helped 270 people to find work."

Community engagement officer for PH Jones, Linda Burrows, said foodbanks have had a big impact on the community.

She said: "We wanted to make sure the money benefited the wider community.

"There is no bigger demand than foodbanks at the moment. We feel the money has gone to an excellent cause."

Foodbank project co-ordinator Ian Smith said: "We will be having new uniforms for the volunteers. The money will also make us financially sustainable for the next two years.

"There is rent, electric lighting and heating to pay, so we are very grateful. The foodbanks is still busy with many people needing our help."

Media co-ordinator for the foodbank, Bob Eaton said: "We did a supermarket shop at Sainsbury's where we collected 325 kilos of food from people.

"I would like to say a big thank you to people you gave on the day.

"The donation from PH Jones is fantastic and will help with running costs for some time."

The foodbank is open on Tuesday and Friday each week from 10am to noon for people donating food, and 12.30pm to 2.30pm for people exchanging food vouchers.

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