An urgent appeal for food donations has been launched in Bolton to support families and individuals struggling because of the coronavirus crisis.
The appeal is being led by local charity Urban Outreach with support from the public sector, voluntary and private organisations that make up ‘The Bolton Family’.
Individuals and businesses can support the appeal by making food or financial donations direct to Urban Outreach. A dedicated collection day, organised by the Bolton Family and operated by Asda staff, is also being held at Asda’s stores at Astley Bridge and Burnden Park on 4 July.
Vanessa Barlow, chair of the board for Bolton Family, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has hit our communities in many ways. Some people are really feeling the effects financially because they can’t work, while others are struggling because the shielding and social distancing measures have left them isolated and without a support network.
“Our members volunteer their time and support throughout the year to help those in need of food in Bolton. We run a food collection day with Asda every year in October, but due to coronavirus we felt compelled to add another date to help those who are in desperate need. A big thank you to the Asda Champions who will be hosting the collection by themselves this year due to social distancing rules.”
Dave Bagley, chief executive of Urban Outreach, added: “At the moment, we’re delivering over 1,000 food parcels per week to support between 2,500 and 3,000 people across the borough. We’ve called on the support of Boltonians many times and they never let us down. We’re hoping they will once again dig deep so we can help people and families who most need our support.
“At the same time, we realise that just providing food is not a long-term solution to helping people who are struggling to get by, so we’re continually working with local agencies to ensure the right sort of support can be provided alongside the food.”
The Urban Outreach website has a list of specific food items the charity needs. Donations can be dropped off at Urban Outreach’s offices in Salop Street, Bolton, or there’s the option to arrange for an online supermarket shop to be delivered there directly.
Individuals or businesses wishing to make financial contributions can do so via the charity’s donations page.
The Bolton Family is made up of local businesses including Warburtons, Seddon, Barkers and Keogh Solicitors; organisations like Bolton Council, Bolton at Home and Greater Manchester mental health services; and charities and social enterprises including Urban Outreach, Bolton CVS, the Woodland Trust, Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and the Octagon Theatre.
For more information on becoming part of The Bolton Family and supporting food collections in Bolton, call Urban Outreach on 01204 385848.