Villagers thankful for store’s gifts of food
SAINSBURY’S is spreading the love with a food donation scheme that just keeps giving.
Every week, the supermarket in The Crescent hands over trolley-loads of food that would otherwise go to waste to a team from Barwell’s George Ward Centre which passes it on to people in need from across the village and beyond.
On Tuesdays from noon, people are invited to the Church Lane centre to receive supplies of fresh food, share toast and tea and benefit from free financial advice and form-filling help.
They are joined by vulnerable people from Earl Shilton, supported by vicar’s wife Rebecca Castle, who then takes back left-over loaves to distribute to needy households in that commu- nity.
Barwell’s PCSO Nathan Bastock, who is based in the building, is also on hand to talk over community concerns, while other villagers get involved by helping to sort and hand out the food or taking in donations of other items.
Some of the surplus bread is put in a freezer at the centre for distributing to people who are unable to attend on the day.
Centre manager Lesley Pratt said: “It has been absolutely brilliant.
“I don’t think any of us thought it would be used as much as it has been.
“We help lots of different people.
“It has been a bit of an eye-opener and sometimes a bit of a tear-jerker.”
She said one young mum who went to the centre with her son at half term ended up in tears because she was so thankful for the food she received.
Mrs Pratt said: “There’s a real knock-on effect.
“We can’t thank Sainsbury’s enough.
“It’s a real benefit to the village.”
Centre users created a collage of photographs and text showing how the supermarket donations have been used, which was put on display close to the checkouts at the store for shoppers to see.
In addition to food, the centre sometimes benefits from donations of other unsaleable items which recently included mismatched multi-packs of underwear from Sainsbury’s clothing department.
People going along to the centre’s Tuesday sessions can make use of a free support service offering energy price comparisons in a bid to reduce fuel payments, along with budgeting advice and other money management help.
To find out more call the George Ward Centre on Hinckley 847410 or go online.
Sainsbury’s PR ambassador Nicky Blower, centre left, and clothing team leader Harriet Richley, centre right, with other staff from the supermarket at The Crescent, Hinckley, hold a collage made by people who use Barwell’s George Ward Centre, including, from left, centre manager Lesley Pratt and Hannah Pratt and, from right, Martha Wakefield and Barwell PCSO 6544 Nathan Bastock