A Tyneside charity has been given a special award for helping to provide food to thousands of families struggling with cash.
The Bay Foodbank has been presented with the Whitley Bay Town Cup by North Tyneside Council.
The authority awards the cup to an organisation or individual of the town who has brought about an outstanding event in the last year, or has been of outstanding service to the community.
The foodbank was chosen this year in recognition of its work in providing emergency food parcels to residents having financial problems either through low income, redundancy, medical bills, a bereavement or benefit delays.
Coun Tommy Mulvenna, chairman of council, said:
“This cup is a fantastic way to show our appreciation and recognising the excellent work that these organisations do.
“The Bay Foodbank provides a very important service to the residents of not only Whitley Bay, but the whole of North Tyneside and they thoroughly deserve this honour.”
The charity has set up several drop-off points across the borough, in locations including supermarkets and churches, where members of the public leave donations of non-perishable food items such as long life milk, tea bags, coffee, tinned fish, meat and vegetables, and baby food.
These are then packaged into parcels and delivered to needy families.
People can be referred to the service by churches, doctors, social services or other agencies.
Rev Alan Dickinson, the group’s chairman, said:
“The Bay Foodbank is honoured to receive the Whitley Bay Town Cup.
“We’d like to thank all of our dedicated volunteers who devote their time, but also those who donate to us because without their support we wouldn’t be able to continue the work we do.
“We’re currently supplying around 1,200 meals per week to those most at need in North Tyneside – resulting in a total of almost 12,000 people we have helped support since 2012.
“Last year was our busiest year yet and we can only hope that our fantastic supporters will stick with us for the coming year.
“We have a good working relationship with North Tyneside Council and look forward to continuing this in 2015.”
The Town Cup was introduced by the former Whitley Bay Council in 1954 and it was donated to North Tyneside Council on its formation in 1974.
Source – Newcastle Evening Chronicle, 23 Jan 2015
Panto fans are helping to raise money for a foodbank that supports struggling families in Tyneside.
The St Peter’s Pantomime Society is staging The Wizard of Oz at the Crosskeys Community Hall, in Monkseaton, Whitley Bay, from January 28 to 31.
The cash raised will go towards the Bay Foodbank, which was set up in 2012 to provide emergency food parcels to people with little or no income.
The group’s performance of Little Red Riding Hoody made headlines last year as panto dame Andy Chambers, 26, went down on one knee and proposed to his partner Leanne Gilks on stage.
Andy, who will be the dame again this year, said:
“I’ve just qualified as a social worker and I’ve seen how people are struggling.
“We thought it would be a good idea to raise money for a charity that is helping people in need.
“We are also planning to buy some luxury items, the kind of things struggling families would be unable to afford, and hope to carry out a Supermarket Sweep-style trolley dash.
“Last year we raised about £1,200 for the Crosskeys Community Hall and The Grafters Club, which supports children and their families after burn injuries. We hope to raise even more money this year.”
This year’s production of The Wizard of Oz has a twist to the original tale. Instead of a house being blown through a tornado, it will feature Dorothy getting on a plane for a shopping trip to The Emerald City and the plane has to make an emergency landing.
“We will have a couple of good witches and I’m playing one of them. Leanne has directed the show and also has a role of a travelling salesperson.
“There will be comedy and laughter, with the main aim of raising money for the foodbank. It’s a fantastic charity that does some wonderful work.
“It costs almost £40 to put together one package of basic food items. We hope our efforts will help to fill many more parcels.”
Tickets, costing £5 for adults and £4 for children, can be bought by ringing Christine Bartlett on 07752563693. There will be two shows on the Saturday, at 2pm and 7pm.
Source – Newcastle Evening Chronicle, 22 Jan 2015