Norwich foodbank delivers 1000 parcels in a month
Norwich foodbank has delivered over 1000 emergency food parcels during April, despite the Covid-19 restrictions, thanks to support from extra volunteers, storage company Viking and landlords the Henderson Trust.
Due to social distancing requirements, and a reduction in volunteer numbers at its ten local distribution centres, on March 30, Norwich foodbank changed to a delivery model operating from its main warehouse unit in Earlham. This enabled the Christian charity to get essential food supplies to people across the community, many of whom have needed to self-isolate.
With support from new volunteers, and provision of extra warehouse space by landlord Henderson Trust, by Monday April 27 the team successfully delivered its 1,000th food parcel of the month, which represents a 36% increase on comparable figures from 2019.
Usually three-day emergency food supplies are boxed-up in the warehouse, then unpacked into individuals’ own bags at distribution centres to be taken home. Boxes are then quickly returned to the central warehouse for re-use. The new model means that over 50 boxes a day are being delivered directly to people’s homes by the foodbank.
Viking Self Storage in Norwich has stepped in to help, with the provision of free cardboard boxes, tape and tape dispensers. Viking has supported the Norwich foodbank continually since 2018, providing them with free storage space where they keep long dated foodstuffs to enable better stock rotation in their warehouse.
Throughout the year, the foodbank is generously supported by cardboard box manufacturer Smurfit Kappa with donations of boxes. They have also kindly increased their support to help the charity at this challenging time.
Project Manager for Norwich foodbank, Hannah Worsley, said: “We are extremely grateful to Viking for their ongoing support of our work through additional storage and the recent gift of supplies, meaning money we have been given can buy food items to ensure those in need receive a nutritionally balanced food parcel.
“We are also thankful to the public for continuing to give food items, give financially and also to those who have joined us as volunteers, as well as many other businesses, churches and individuals who have donated and encouraged us at this time. This has been a very challenging few weeks whilst we have put new plans into place, but we are pleased that those who have needed us during this time, have still received food; albeit in a different way.”
Operations Manager for Viking Self Storage, James Merrells, said: “We are so pleased to be able to support the robust work of Norwich foodbank, especially at this difficult time. Their willingness to change so drastically to continue to support the local community is truly admirable and is a testimony to their determination and resilience. They are a great team doing great work now as much as ever. We are more than happy to help in this way!”
Donations may be made to support the work of the Norwich foodbank, either as a one-off or a regular payment. Visit their website www.norwichfoodbank.co.uk and click Donate Online.
Pictured top are Norwich foodbank warehouse manager Keith (left) and James from Viking and, above, Paulo and Cláudia Mussi from NCBC getting ready to deliver some food boxes.