Imagine just for a moment not having enough provisions to feed your family. In the run-up to Christmas when everyone’s planning their big family feasts and the kids are drawing up grand lists of ridiculously expensive gifts, I thought it’d be healthy for everyone in my family to think about the people in our area who are really struggling.
So when the #30DayFestiveFoodBank idea popped up in my Facebook Feed started by blogger Gabrielle Treanor, I knew we had to join in. It’s such a simple idea, very achievable and so I hope you’ll join me if you can. Grab a box and fill it with festive food items every day for the whole of November, and then donate it to your local food bank. I think it’s powerful to show children in a very simple way that you do have the power to help people and that the problems are very real and where we live.
People who are referred to food banks are in desperate need of support, and if providing a box of festive goodies can make one family’s Christmas just a tiny bit more bearable then how great is that? The amount of hoops people have to jump through to get a basic level of help in this country is truly disgraceful.
HOW DOES #30DayFestiveFoodBank WORK?
• Go to The Trussell Trust’s website and find your local food bank
• Check on the local site what grocery items are on their most wanted list
• Make a list of your own including:
– festive food such as mince pies, chocolate coins, selection boxes
– food that isn’t a staple such as chutneys, relishes or sweet treats
– Christmas items such as crackers, small stocking gifts or tree decorations
– toiletries such as deodorant, tampons, shaving foam, toothpaste
• Leave out fresh food, anything refrigerated or alcohol as food banks can’t accept them
• Think about the kinds of products and brands that you like, what your family are going to be eating and using in December and include those in your list
• Bear in mind use by dates, make sure the date is at least until the end of January 2017 so the recipients can make full use of the item
• Find one or two big boxes and add an item to the box each day in November
• Share photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with #30DayFestiveFoodBank and spread the word to encourage others to join in. The Trussell Trust have a Facebook page and Twitter account so you can tag them too.
• In the first week of December pop along to your local food bank and hand over your donation
So next time you’re at the supermarket, pick up some extra items – a box of mince pies here, a bottle of shower gel there. Get the kids to go through the cupboards to see if there’s some good stuff you’ve not used yet and is still in date. Take the kids to the shops and pick out some festive crackers and a few decorations to include in the box.
Tell everyone on social media that you’re doing it so your friends can join in and spread the word too. Don’t forget to tag it with #30DayFestiveFoodBank
The Bay Foodbank
For my local followers, The Bay Foodbank has a list of items they most need donating and where you can drop them off