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Christmas boost for food banks and community groups

Food banks and charities facing what is expected to be their busiest ever Christmas, have been boosted by our bumper donation of food, toys and chocolates. Much-needed grants have also been awarded from the Homes Plus My Community fund.

The teams responsible for maintaining and improving our homes in Staffordshire and Shropshire got the festive season off to a great start by donating all the loyalty points collected with every purchase of paint. Our generous tradespeople wanted these to be used to obtain food bank essentials and toys for children who might not otherwise receive a present this year.

The Homes Plus offices in Acton Gate quickly turned into Santa’s Grotto as we took large quantities of food, toiletries, games, chocolates and toys purchased using the loyalty points, began to arrive. These were soon followed by even more toys from suppliers, who had heard what we were doing and wanted to help.

Local charities House of Bread, Rising Brook Food Bank, Helping Hearts Outreach and the Shrewsbury Food Bank at Barnabus Community Church were delighted to collect food and toiletries, for people in need at Christmas.

Helping Hearts Outreach works with people experiencing homelessness and domestic abuse in local communities. The charity received toys and chocolates for local children. A representative said:

“We’re over the moon and so grateful for this donation. This Christmas, a lot of people will have no money and no way of buying gifts or treats. These presents will put a smile on the faces of so many children.”

Food banks helping people in need in Staffordshire and Shropshire also benefitted from timely cash donations from the Homes Plus My Community fund. These were awarded to House of Bread and Rising Brook Food Bank in Stafford, Kingsway Food Bank in Wombourne, Cannock and District Food Bank in South Staffordshire and Shrewsbury Food Bank at Barnabus Community Church.

And with so many people worrying about energy bills this winter, lounges in some of our retirement living communities are continuing to offer ‘warm spaces’ providing a friendly welcome, hot drink and a biscuit.

“We are pleased that we can make a positive difference to so many local people, especially at this time of year,” said Homes Plus director of housing, Samantha Allcott. “As well as increasing the supplies of essential food and toiletries available to people in need, Rising Brook Food Bank told us that they would use some of our donation to fund food bank hampers for individuals and families  facing a difficult Christmas and Kingsway Food Bank will be able to buy a fridge-freezer, extending the range of products that they can provide in the future.”

Local charities and voluntary groups can apply for funding from the Homes Plus My Community fund online: https://www.housingplusgroup.co.uk/sponsorship