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Food mountain boost for Christmas appeal

By Heather Large | Feed a Family | Published:

The Express & Star’s Feed A Family This Christmas appeal has been given a huge boost, thanks to an anonymous donation of more than 1,200 items.

Reporters Jordan Harris and Heather Large with helper Phil Beecher and the huge amount of food donated for the Feed A Family campaign

Hundreds of tins of soup, vegetables, meat and fish have been handed over as well as dozens of bags of pasta, rice, noodles, snacks and biscuits.

Baby food and cereal also make up the massive donation of 1,240 items, which filled three cars when it was collected.

It has been given to the appeal by a Staffordshire community association which wanted the food to help struggling families in the run-up to the festive season.

The food will be now be distributed along with other donations to food banks and other charitable organisations across the Black Country and Staffordshire.

The anonymous donation includes 60 packets of cereals, 100 tins of soup, 250 tins of beans, 60 packets of dry pasta and sauce, 40 packets of biscuits, 40 packet sauces and 100 tins of tomatoes.

There are also 50 tins of meat, 100 tins of vegetables, 100 tins of fish, 40 packets of snacks, 70 packets of tea bags, 30 assorted baby foods, 100 packets of pasta, 60 packets of dry and microwaveable packets of rice and 40 packets of noodles.

Deputy editor Diane Davies said: “This is an absolutely amazing contribution, we are incredibly grateful. It has really got the Feed a Family campaign off to a flying start. What a fantastic, kind-hearted gesture.

“But I can’t emphasis enough how much pressure there is on food banks and homelessness charities at this time.

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“We really want to help the families in our communities, particularly over Christmas. So I would urge all our readers to support this campaign, even if it’s just with one tin of beans, so we can bring a little Christmas cheer to those who really need it.”

Food has also been flooding in to our donation points around the area from readers backing our appeal.

While two schools – Wood End Primary School and Westcroft School, both in Wolverhampton – have also pledged to support our campaign by collecting items in the coming weeks.

Former Emmerdale star Lisa Riley, who will be appearing in Jack and The Beanstalk at Wolverhampton Grand, and antiques expert Will Farmer, have already backed our campaign, saying it was great way to help those who may be struggling at this time of year.

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We are asking for seasonal treats such as mince pies, chocolates and Christmas puddings, as well as basics including canned goods, long-life milk, fruit juice, pasta and rice.

We just ask that festive food has a best-before date of the end of January. Non-food items such as toiletries, new socks and small gifts will also be gratefully received.

The appeal is running until December 16.

The good causes we will be supporting again this year include The Well (Home of Wolverhampton Food Bank).

We are also helping the Good Shepherd Ministry, based in Wolverhampton, and the Black Country Food Bank, which has centres across Dudley, Sandwell and Walsall. Other groups include Smethwick Food Bank, Walsall North Food Bank and Cannock and District Food Bank.

The appeal will also be supporting The Haven which provides support services to women and children who are affected by domestic violence and homelessness.

Thanks to the generosity of our readers, the appeal was a huge success last year collecting 9,000 items.

The food items helped hundreds of families eat and gave some Christmas cheer to the homeless and struggling families.

Some were used to create food parcels for people in need over the festive period and into the new year while others benefited a soup kitchen.

Plenty of well-known faces got on-board the campaign including Men Behaving Badly star Neil Morrissey recorded a special video message of thanks.

Heather Large

By Heather Large
Special projects reporter - @HeatherL_star

Senior reporter and part of the Express & Star special projects team specialising in education and human interest features.

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