SHOPPERS in Bromsgrove are being urged to help people in need this Christmas by donating food during the UK’s biggest food collection.

The Tesco Food Collection has launched across the supermarket’s stores, with customers being invited to give long-life food to support the work of charities the Trussell Trust and FareShare, helping people who cannot afford to feed themselves and their families.

The long-life food donated to food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network is given in emergency food parcels to people referred because they don’t have enough money coming in to cover essential costs.

Food donated to FareShare is distributed to charities and community groups who use it to provide meals for vulnerable groups such as isolated older people and those in homeless shelters.

Last year, generous shoppers donated more than 3.5 million meals-worth of food during the Tesco Food Collection.

This year the supermarket is hoping to top that figure. Once again Tesco will be topping up the value of the customer donations by an additional 20 per cent to help the charities in their work.

Bromsgrove Advertiser:

Tesco’s Group Communications Director Christine Heffernan said: “We know that the items that our customers donate can make a real difference to people who really need that little bit of extra help this year - whether it is in a food parcel for someone at a time of crisis, or a part of a hot meal which means that a vulnerable person does not feel lonely this Christmas.”

“Both FareShare and the Trussell Trust do amazing work and we are proud to do our bit at Tesco by topping up the public donations to the Tesco Food Collection by 20 per cent.”

One of the groups that receives donations from FareShare is Welcome Change Community Centre and Café in Shard End, which offers treatment and support services to people struggling with drug and alcohol addictions.

There is also a nursery for local parents to use, as well as a range of leisure activities for the whole community to enjoy, including a bouncy castle and vintage cart.

Centre manager Victoria Finch said: “Christmas can be a really difficult time for many people and we hope that our community café is a place they can come to relax and socialise with others.

“Thanks to the donations from the Tesco Food Collection, we’ll be able to feed many more people in need across the city.”

The Tesco Food Collection runs from Thursday, November 21 until Saturday, November 23.