This year has proved challenging for most of us in one way or another due to the coronavirus pandemic and its various repercussions.
However, for some people, it has not just been a challenge, it has been absolutely devastating. Many have had to deal with a reduced household income, and some have lost their jobs altogether through no fault of their own. These unwelcome side-effects of the COVID-19 virus have left thousands of families facing the hardship of life on the breadline.
At Beverley Building Society, we firmly believe in building better futures by supporting our customers, and our wider community, however we can – these are values that our Society was originally founded upon and that we still uphold today.
Nobody should go hungry
More than 27,600 people live below the poverty line in this area, and this number has inevitably risen during the pandemic. So, with this in mind, we have chosen to make a £1,000 Christmas donation to a very special local charity, the East Yorkshire Foodbank. We agree wholeheartedly with this charity’s belief that nobody in our community should have to go hungry, and commend their enormous efforts to support people living in East Yorkshire.
Project Manager, Mandy Tomlinson, explained that the need is more critical than ever. The Foodbank has seen more demand than ever before, with many of those going hungry, children.
“Between 1 April and 30 November this year, we’ve helped to feed 6,000 people across the county. This compares to 2,200 during the same period of 2019. Of the 6,000 who’ve needed our support this year, 40 per cent have been children.”
As a result, this has been the first year the charity has had to purchase food direct from wholesalers, rather than relying just on donations of essentials from members of the public at venues like supermarkets.
“In the run-up to Christmas, when the majority of people are preparing for their festivities, our priority is ensuring people have food on their table. It’s been a huge effort to meet the surge in demand during 2020 but we’re hugely grateful to members of the community, and organisations like Beverley Building Society, that have come forward to assist us.”
Karl Elliott, the Society’s Chief Executive, said: “Every member of our team has witnessed first-hand the problems caused by COVID-19, but we have all been fortunate enough to retain our livelihoods.
“We know that, for some people, putting food on the table is no longer something they can take for granted, and many rely on the kindness and support of their community to help feed their families.
“We hope this donation will go some way to ensuring nobody in our community goes hungry this Christmas.”
East Yorkshire foodbank opened in May 2016 to give people in crisis hope, practical help, and a brighter future. The charity provides three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to them in crisis.
The foodbank is a project founded by local churches and community groups, working together towards stopping hunger in the local area. They are part of a nationwide network of foodbanks, supported by The Trussell Trust, working to combat poverty and hunger across the UK.
The Foodbank Network was founded in 2004 after four years of developing the original foodbank based in Salisbury. Since then The Trussell Trust has helped communities work together to launch foodbanks nationwide in a wide range of towns and cities.
In 2019/20, The Trussell Trust’s Foodbank Network provided 1,900,122 three-day emergency food supplies and support to UK people in crisis. Of these, 720,504 went to children.
For more information about the East Yorkshire Foodbank please visit https://eastyorkshire.foodbank.org.uk/
Pic: the Beverley’s Tracy Fletcher hands over our donation to Foodbank Chair Kate Leaf.