Following the launch of our ‘FE Foodbank Friday’ last week, nine other colleges from around the country have been inspired to join us and get behind the campaign.
Each college has set up its own virtual giving page to support local communities during and indeed beyond, the Coronavirus crisis.
When campuses re-open, foodbank bins will be provided to every organisation involved in the campaign. But while most school and college sites are closed, monetary donations are being collected instead and will be donated to individual foodbanks, which are in real need of support.
The colleges signed up to the campaign so far are:
- Boston College
- Central Bedfordshire College
- Chichester College Group
- Dudley College
- East Coast College
- Kingston Maurward College
- Loughborough College
- Trafford College Group
- York College
Since the launch of the initiative last week, London & South East Education Group has seen food and monetary donations flood in from kind-hearted members of staff across its school and college campuses in Bromley, Bexley and Greenwich. This included three trolley-loads of provisions from our BR6 Restaurant as well as the donation of a chest freezer to a local foodbank to store frozen items.
And in addition, our student union has chosen the FE Foodbank Friday project as its charity of the year. It has pledged almost £3000 of donations to the campaign, which have been collected from students throughout the year.
Dr Sam Parrett OBE, CEO of London & South East Colleges Group, is spearheading this now national initiative. She says:
“Amid the many challenges the last few weeks have thrown at us all, it has been heart-warming to see colleges coming together to support their local communities.
“We are living in extraordinary and difficult times and never before has it been more important to help one another. Good can come out of every crisis and that is certainly what we are seeing across the entire FE sector as we pull together in time of need.
“Colleges and schools are a force of good in their communities and by working together, we can have an even greater positive impact on people’s lives. We are calling on as many organisations as possible to sign up and get involved in FE Foodbank Friday.”
One of the first organisations to join the campaign is Trafford College Group. Lesley Davies OBE, Principal and Chief Executive of Trafford College Group says:
"Like all colleges at the moment, we are doing our very best to support students, staff and our local communities through a challenging period.
"For many families in our area, struggling to buy food is a regular issue - but has become even harder during the coronavirus pandemic. Trafford College Group is delighted to be part of the FE Foodbank Friday campaign, which is not only bringing colleges together, but represents the important part that the FE sector is playing through this crisis and beyond."
Daniella Oni-Okeke, President of London South East Colleges' Student Union says:
"Our student body has always been fantastic at supporting other members of the local and wider community. This year we have collectively raised almost £3000 for charity and we have decided to donate it to the FE Foodbank Friday campaign.
"Life is not easy for anyone at the moment, but by coming together we can all do our bit to help one another and make a positive difference."
If you would like donate to this important cause, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/london-and-south-east-education-group
Food donations are also being welcomed directly by foodbanks across the region. To find your local foodbank, contact the Trussell Trust: https://www.trusselltrust.org/