Information about local food donations
Statement by Sue Marland, Senior Pastor of Wells Vineyard Church and Manager of Wells Vineyard Foodbank
THERE are a number of donation points across Wells, which is a wonderful statement of care and kindness from our city. Waitrose, Wookey Hub, Morrisons, Lidl, Tesco, Santander and Cooper and Tanner all have collection points for food. Some, like Morrisons, have multiple collection appeals running at the moment. Perhaps unsurprisingly, many people want to know where the food is going, but some are confused about which donations are going to which charities.
As a result, I would like to offer my understanding of the situation.
Firstly, I would like to thank all who support us in every way. It would be impossible to supply all those who are coming to us, without your generosity. Ironically, it is this very generosity of our city that has contributed to the confusion.
Wells Vineyard Foodbank is an independent foodbank, run by the Vineyard Church and many volunteers from the Wells community. We are not a member of Trussell Trust, which is a national organisation. Tesco in Wells is a member of Trussell Trust, hence the community donations collected in their basket go to Bridgwater (as decided by the Trust), and not to Wells. However, Wells Vineyard Foodbank do receive end-of-day fresh food from Tesco once a week and the staff and community champion in-store continue to help us with other donations and special consideration.
We also receive two end-of-day donations of fresh food from Waitrose. In addition, the basket for customer donations in-store is solely for Wells Vineyard Foodbank. Waitrose make it a point to do regular specific collection drives for us as well.
There is a designated basket in Santander for Wells Vineyard Foodbank and also one in Cooper and Tanner every Christmas.
Wookey Hub have set up a gift card scheme for financial contributions for Wells Vineyard Foodbank and supply us weekly with eggs and fresh fruit and vegetables from that.
The donations put in the basket in Lidl are allocated to the Connect Centre.
In Morrisons there are donation points for several different recipients. Wells Vineyard Fooodbank have a wooden crate on the wall, near the kiosk. Also in-store there is a shopping trolley with a sign for Foodbank. The packets that are on offer and any other donations put in that trolley are designated for other organisations and not Wells Vineyard Foodbank. There is also a Christmas tree with gifts/donations which is designated, by Trussell Trust, to go to Cheddar Valley. Again, not Wells Vineyard Foodbank.
The Wells Vineyard Foodbank team want to see the needs of the hungry met, wherever they may live, and are grateful that the community, supermarkets, organisations and businesses in our city have the same concern. This year, from January to the end of October, we have been able to provide over 66,000 meals to people with low incomes and/or financial challenges. This is nearly six times higher than for the whole of 2019. It is only because of the generosity of the Wells community that this has been possible.
It looks like this Christmas will be a busy one. The number of families and individuals we are looking after in Wells and the surrounding villages is once again increasing. Let’s make it a happy one for all.
God Bless richly
• Should you wish to make a financial contribution to Wells Vineyard Foodbank: these can be made to Wells Vineyard Christian Fellowship HSBC account; sort code: 40-46-06, account number: 31387170. Please use ‘Wells Foodbank’ as the reference.