The first food bank in Rushcliffe, run by Sewa Day Nottingham, has marked its first year in helping to eliminate hunger in the region.
The food bank started with humble beginnings in a changing room at West Bridgford Colts FC. Starting with 10 volunteers it helped approximately 30 people who were in need. It has now grown to more than 40 volunteers and serves 120 people out of Edwalton Church Hall.
The Charity says it is very grateful for the support from Edwalton Parish Church and West Bridgford Colts FC. The football club have still continued their support and offer space.
Hetvi Parekh from Sewa Day, one of the coordinator of the food bank says, “Our volunteers are like one big family, with different ages and all walks of life. Our youngest volunteer is 5 and oldest has been 91! Volunteering is not just beneficial for the people who receive support but also for volunteers themselves. People have made life long friends, have found a purpose in their lives and felt a positive impact on their mental health. We are a friendly group and are willing to welcome anyone who wants to genuinely make a difference. Without the volunteers, we wouldn’t have been able to create this massive difference!”.
Helen Lees, from the Charity shop Redress in West Bridgford, adds “We have been raising money for charities since the start of the pandemic but were shocked to learn a year ago that a food bank was needed in Rushcliffe. Through our local preloved clothes sale events, we have been able to commit to helping Sewa Day with food donations every fortnight. We wish it wasn’t needed but it shows that the cost of living crisis is hitting everyone. Sewa Day do an amazing job in our local community”.
Morrisons Gamston has supported the Rushcliffe food bank since it started a year ago. Community Champion, Kelly Uvegas says “It’s fantastic Morrison Gamston has supported Rushcliffe food bank since it started a year ago and will continue to do so. We would also like to thank our customers who have played a huge part by donating to this great organisation”.
Garry Bryant, co-President of the Rotary Club of Rushcliffe offered congratulations to the Rushcliffe Food Bank for its first birthday. He says “Members of the club, with their partners have been volunteers from the beginning, part of team of volunteers delivering food parcels across a large area of Rushcliffe. The club has also been pleased to be able to support the food bank with some funds. The Sewa Day Rushcliffe food bank has done an amazing job and we look forward to its continuing success”.
Regular volunteer Fran Judge says “I have been volunteering at the Rushcliffe Foodbank since November 2021, both packing and delivering. Not only is it great to be able to help people in my local community, but I also enjoy spending time with the other fantastic volunteers every fortnight. The whole group are so committed to not only providing essentials like food and toiletries, but also to finding different ways we can spread joy, be it Easter kids packs, eggs and daffodils at Easter to selection boxes at Christmas. I am just so glad that I got in touch with Sewa Day to volunteer as it has become such an important part of my life.”
Sewa Day receives referrals from the Council including Sure Start Children Centre and Citizens Advice Bureau. It aim’s to help at least for four months for each individual with generous food parcels, which include perishable and non-perishable products.
The Charity is also grateful to organisations like Neighbourly, FareShare and Aldi Edwalton, including ongoing support from Rushcliffe Borough Council.
It’s food bank is keen on avoiding waste and redistributes items to avoid having to throw away food. A simple box of food makes a big difference, with food banks helping prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems
Duke of Edinburgh students have also volunteered on site and there are multiple members of the same families helping and made this a regular activity in their life.
Sewa Day is a national Charity which promotes performing an act of kindness without expectation of reward. It also does various projects throughout the year like serving meals to homeless people, distributing Easter eggsand Christmas presents.
If people in the area want to refer anyone, they can get in touch via the below routes.