Foodbank given £28,000 in memory of volunteer

Foodbank given £28,000 in memory of volunteer

by Danielle Thompson (May 2020)

SKELMERSDALE’S Trussell Trust Foodbank have been given a £28,000 donation from a bank chain to help it through the coronavirus pandemic – in memory of a dedicated volunteer.

The Co-operative Bank has worked with its trustee partners of ‘historic special purpose entities’ to make the donation to the local food bank, which operates in the community around one of the bank’s main offices. It was recommended by Co-operative Bank employees to receive the funds as colleagues have been volunteering at the foodbank for a number of years, seeing the good work and the vital service in action. Colleagues also regularly collect items for donation to the initiative that provides a lifeline for those struggling to afford food and essentials in the area.

The Trussell Trust foodbank in Skelmersdale has a special relationship with bank colleagues following the passing of Paul Lowe, a bank staff member who was dedicated to supporting the Skelmersdale foodbank at every opportunity. Paul is much missed by his bank colleagues and the foodbank volunteers.

Tim Bleazard, Skelmersdale and District Foodbank Project Manager said: “It is simply a staggering amount of money, and a wonderful tribute to Paul.

“As a charity run predominantly by volunteers, we rely on generosity to operate. Generosity of time from our volunteers, and generosity of food and of money by the public and local businesses.

“This amount of money will enable us to plan forward in a way that is rarely experienced. Our aim is to be resilient to all challenges, and sustainable through all circumstances, so that we can continue to provide emergency food parcels to people most in need, now and in the future. Through this amazing donation we will be able to think big and aim high.

“Paul came to the food bank in 2016 and even though he worked full time at the Co-operative Bank he dedicated a lot of his own time to the foodbank. He was also a very active member of the steering group. He came into the food bank even when he was on annual leave from work and took annual leave to work the full day at the Tesco collection each year.

“Paul was a good friend to Skelmersdale and District Foodbank and a loyal servant to the people of Skelmersdale. His legacy will live on. Thank you Paul, and thank you Co-operative Bank.”

Andrew Bester, Chief Executive Officer at The Co-operative Bank said; “We are grateful to have the opportunity to select the Trussell Trust’s Skelmersdale branch as a charity to receive these funds, and in doing so, we can help to make a difference to those that vitally need it. Giving funds to the food bank in Skelmersdale means a great deal to us, not only as it is the community one of our offices’ is part of, but also as a tribute to the commitment of our colleague, Paul, and the relationship he built between us and this essential service.”

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