Newground Together have won the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA) Employability Awards 2021, in the Team of the Year – Crisis Management category for their work with Christians Together Calderdale at their foodbank in Halifax.
The Calderdale-based project applied to the EN:Procure Sheffield Social Mobility Fund in September this year and were awarded £2,750 to contribute towards delivering much needed support to people experiencing food poverty at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Newground’s employment and skills team responded to a plea for help from The Voluntary Sector Alliance in Calderdale in March last year, offering their assistance with this project, initially set up and run by Christians Together Calderdale. Their Gathering Place Foodbank desperately needed all the support they could get as many of their volunteers were self-isolating at that time.
The award-winning project saw that over 1,558 volunteer hours supporting over 47,60 people in need of vital food support in Calderdale - including over 670 adults and 180 children. The foodbank distributed 814 family parcels and 1,997 individual parcels.
They secured an astonishing £20,000 food donations from local people and businesses, making 57 journeys to local businesses to pick up donations and deliveries to hundreds of home to families and vulnerable people with health conditions. Almost 600 Together Housing Group homes received food parcels.
With the help of the Newground team’s specialist skills, they were able to refer over 44 people to a number of other charities and agencies to help them access support family, finance, emergency housing and mental health support.
Emily Pearson, Newground Together’s Community Programmes Manager, who applied for the EN:Procure Social Value Credits grant, commented:“We, along with the rest of the country, found ourselves in uncharted territory, we wanted to help in whatever way we could. The partnership happened overnight in super quick time. With nothing affordable on the shelves, the amazing generous donations from local businesses, time from the volunteers and support of the Voluntary Sector Alliance ensured a Calderdale wide coordinated response, to those most in need”.
Emma Mottram, Director of Operations at EN:Procure added: “It’s wonderful to see how Newground have responded to help those affected by the Covid Crisis. They have galvanised local support to bring meaningful changes to people’s lives. This is a great example of how EN’s members can utilise their social value credits and we are delighted to support our members and the communities they serve.”
If you would like to donate and support the work of the Gathering Place Foodbank please visit: https://ctcthegatheringplace.org/donations