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Young volunteers help Haverhill Foodbank reach those in need at Christmas





A Haverhill charity was given a helping hand earlier this month to turn start turning more than £20,000 raised for its Christmas Appeal into food hampers for hard-pressed families.

The money was donated to the appeal run by REACH Community Projects, of which one part is Haverhill Foodbank.

Henry Wilson, REACH’s CEO, said: “This incredibly generous support at a time of general belt tightening, plus some from corporate donors, transforms into the practical action which has been taking place in recent days.

Duke of Edinburgh Award volunteers and the Scouts from Steeple Bumpstead helping REACH Community Projects to pack food parcels. Contributed
Duke of Edinburgh Award volunteers and the Scouts from Steeple Bumpstead helping REACH Community Projects to pack food parcels. Contributed

“It’s so very, very cold and our phone is ringing constantly with local people who are cold and hungry and urgently need help.”

As part of this practical action, a team of volunteers made up from Steeple Bumpstead Scouts, Duke of Edinburgh Award participants and James Goodhall, from the REACH warehouse, packed more than 100 Christmas hamper boxes for families in Haverhillas well as for delivery to local support agencies such as Children and Young People’s Services across the town.

The event was organised by Elaine Hewes, REACH’s volunteer experience co-ordinator, who, delighted with the outcome, said: “It was a very cold evening but the willingness of the volunteers was exceptional and we really do appreciate the superb effort put in by Steeple Bumpstead Scouts and the Duke of Edinburgh’s volunteers towards delivering some Christmas cheer which would otherwise be hard to find for many families this year.”

Henry Wilson, the CEO of REACH Community Projects. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2019.
Henry Wilson, the CEO of REACH Community Projects. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2019.

Elaine joined REACH just 10 months ago in the new role of volunteer experience co-ordinator and has already managed to raise volunteer numbers from 28 to over 70, at a time when many charities are seeing a reduction.

Henry added: “We are so pleased to have Elaine on board and thrilled that she has both increased volunteer numbers and organised the mammoth Christmas hamper scheme which is made possible, jointly, by the REACH Christmas appeal and the simply wonderful food collection at Haverhill Tesco (which took place in early December).”