"We are passionate about giving something back to the community that we call home, and have established strong relationships with the regions food banks."
The UK’s leading online flooring retailer is supporting some of the most vulnerable families in its area this Christmas with a four-figure donation to a network of food banks.
UK Flooring Direct - which is headquartered in Hinckley, Leicestershire, and has recently opened a new warehouse and offices at Prologis Park in Coventry - has donated £6,000 to The Trussell Trust’s food banks in Hinckley, Nuneaton, Bedworth and Coventry.
The effects of the Coronavirus pandemic, such as redundancy, have played a key role in more people turning to food banks for support.
The Trussell Trust's Coventry food bank has seen a 50 per cent increase this year on the 28,000 people they fed last year, while their Bedworth food bank fed around 4,200 people in the first three months of the first lockdown - a huge increase on the 1,285 mouths they fed during 2019.
Nuneaton’s food banks have fed more than 5,100 mouths this year, while Hinckley has provided 27,000 meals to more than 3,000 people since April.
The money donated by UK Flooring Direct will enable the Bedworth food bank to purchase chicken and turkey to ensure as many vulnerable families as possible have a meal on the table on Christmas Day.
Elsewhere, Coventry’s food bank will be using the funds to pull together hundreds of Christmas hampers made up of selection boxes and other festive treats for vulnerable families.
The Nuneaton and Hinckley branches of The Trussell Trust will be using the donation to purchase non-perishable items to ensure they do not run out of essential stock.
Lisa Ashby, board member at UK Flooring Direct, reached out to each of The Trussell Trust’s food banks to present a cheque.
She commented: “We are passionate about giving something back to the community that we call home, and have established strong relationships with the region’s food banks.
“We are aware of the tough times that many families are going through right now, and hopefully this donation will go some way to making the festive period a little bit easier.”
Hugh McNeill, Project Manager at The Trussell Trust in Coventry, said: “The donation from UK Flooring Direct will enable us to source items we are short of - such as festive treats above and beyond the usual food packages that we put together - so we are extremely grateful to them.
“By the time we mark our tenth birthday on 21 January we will have fed more than 190,000 mouths - 40 per cent of which are children aged under 16.
“Sadly, we’ve seen demand steadily growing over the past decade for a variety of reasons. This includes austerity, those having to wait longer for payments during the rollout of universal credit, and now the impact of the coronavirus pandemic where employed people in secure jobs last year suddenly had nothing.”
Gill Hancock, who is the manager of the Bedworth food bank, added: “We are expecting demand to increase even further as we get closer to Christmas, so we are extremely grateful for the donation from UK Flooring Direct.
“The money will play a significant part in helping us to purchase chicken and turkey to ensure as many vulnerable families as possible have a meal on the table on Christmas Day.”
Julie Baker, Project Manager at The Trussell Trust in Hinckley, commented: “Although we are in a good place in terms of stock levels heading into Christmas, the donation from UK Flooring Direct will enable us to prepare for the New Year when the level of demand is unclear, so we are extremely grateful for their generosity.”
Photo caption: From left, Giles Morton, Kay McEwan (UK Flooring Direct), Tony Lee, Dee Ward, Lisa Ashby (UK Flooring Direct), Hugh McNeill, Russ Gudger (UK Flooring Direct)