Emergency Food, Toiletries & Clothes Bank Space to chat, be safe and much more……
This is a BIG thank you for helping us at Given Freely Freely Given in the last year. You have allowed us to assist ever increasing numbers of people seeking help from us. Some of you may know we will be four years old in March this year. We started keep records in September 2016. There is a graph below showing how our average weekly attendance has gone from 20 to over 50. In the last four weeks we have seen in excess of 70. We've seen our volunteer hours increase to over 40 a week. You can see the volunteer hours increasing for the clothes bank as it has continue to grow beyond all expectations.
Revd Alun Price
Attendance and volunteer hours by each 3 month quarter since September 2016
We get weekly food donations from Tesco. The Junk food project give us food they don't need. We also get donations from ASDA, One Shop and SubWay. Many individuals bring us personal donations. We are very grateful to local schools who oranised collections at Harvest and Christmas. So thank you - Secondary Schools - Astrea Woodfields Academy, XP academy, Wilsic, and Primary Schools - Woodfield, Balby Central, Carr Lodge, Wadworth, Tickhill St Marys, Hill House, Sprotborough Orchard.
We give out an average of 19 emergency food bags every week to single people. We also give out larger bags to families in need. We do not ask for a referral and there is no limit on how many times you can come to us for help.
Our coffee shop continues to be a safe place for people to talk and deal with immediate hunger. Council staff can often be present to help people with complex situations. We have seen some great success in resolving seemingly impossible problems especially when people are about to become homeless.
The clothes bank in full swing. We've been able to help individuals and whole families. Most of the clothes we receive would be going to land fill so we play our part in helping to recycle.
Sets of Duvets are often popular. We make up sets of bedding. Some people will donate pillows other duvets, other covers. Put them all together what do you get - a complete set. Single sets useful for bed sits. When families get a house we often need several sets - one for each bed room.
We've seen increasing demand for household items. Its helpful to be able to kit out someone moving into a bedsit with knife, fork, some plates and sides, a few mugs. Likewise families moving into a house needs lots of items. We sometimes get donations when a relative has died. Its a comfort for some that items are not just going to a skip or a tip but redisplayed in a family house. It all helps to make a home.
In the run up to last Christmas we were able to run a toy stall and this was very popular. We became aware of several families who did not know how they were "going to do Christmas" without the toys and games they obtained from us.
We have been really challenged to constantly increase our capacity to cope with increasing need and then the increase in donations. Money from Doncaster Council paid for these two units from IKEA which allows us to sort and store commonly requested items so we can easily find them.
ASDA bought us two industrial size filter coffee pots to keep pace with demand for coffee. Other donations helped us put wheels on pews so we have more space midweek.
We've introduced "The Big Sort" on Monday mornings to go through donations and generally get ready for Tuesday.
We have started a new group on Thursday 12:30 - 3pm called "Getting to Know You" which is an Arts and Crafts group which does some singing, knitting jig saws, painting etc.
We have also started a free youth group for 11-18 yr olds on Friday nights from 7-8:30 pm.
So many thanks again for supporting us and I hope this is something you can continue to do in 2019 and beyond.