Hull City’s Tigers Trust, Leeds United Football Club and their Club Community Organisation have linked-up with His Church (HIS) as part of an initiative to support NHS workers and vulnerable people who have been heavily impacted by COVID-19.
The initiative is known as ‘In It Together’ and will not only help to tackle the shortage that has been seen in food and supplies in the area, but will also create hampers to be given out to NHS staff who are working on the frontline every day to protect people suffering in our communities.
The launch sees lorryloads of deliveries to both Hull City and Leeds United football clubs, who will help distribute it to hard-pressed NHS staff in their communities. From Hull City’s ground, the football club will help to transfer the food to Hull Royal Infirmary where it will be distributed to NHS staff at the infirmary and Castle Hill.
At Leeds United, the first lorryload of supplies arrived at the stadium yesterday afternoon, with coaches and staff on hand to sort the parcels into several vehicles ready for distribution. The food packages where then delivered, through a contact-free method in line with government guidelines, to local hospitals and the South and East ‘Early Help Hubs’ that are working with other foodbanks and vulnerable families during this period.
HIS is a charity that has been providing help to foodbanks across the country for the past 13 years and due to the coronavirus outbreak, the organisation has had to increase the amount of stock it supplies fourfold, with demand at an all-time high.
Their warehouse, which is based in Lincolnshire, is 50,000 square foot and stocked with freezers, fridges and shelving to store product. Before the crisis they were distributing just over 50,000 meals a week across the UK and in response to the overwhelming demand they are now receiving, they are set to distribute around 200,000 meals a week through a network of over 15,000 charities and organisations, including via both of the Championship sides.
Senior coordinator for His Church Richard Humphrey, said: “We have never known demand like it. We have staff who are living in lock-down at our warehouse to continue getting food out to people who need it at this desperate time.
“We are simultaneously sourcing new donations to maintain our supply levels. With COVID-19, we really all are ‘In It Together’ and it is only by working together that we will triumph over the virus and the hardship it creates.”
Michael Kinsey, Operations Executive at the Leeds United Foundation, added: “Leeds City Council have set-up a really well coordinated operation to support those who are in need throughout the city and we know it is important to play our part in helping to support vulnerable people and families who have been heavily impacted by COVID-19.
“We have a longstanding relationship with His Church and the operation they run is fantastic. The amount of people they are able to support is outstanding and we want to ensure that this initiative is going to help people in the long term. It won’t just be food packages, but we will look at supplying emergency care parcels as well to help with other essential items such as medicine, toilet roll, nappies, washing powder and so much more.
“By working together, we are able to help so many more people who really need it.”
Head of Programmes at Hull City’s Tigers Trust, Richard Dexter said: “As a local Charity we are delighted to continue to support our local communities and importantly the NHS through these unprecedented times, through our on-going partnership with His Church. The opportunity to provide fresh food for NHS workers who continue to work tirelessly is critical to us and the people we work with, and the very least we can do as a means of showing our gratitude to them. During these difficult times we are proud to be able to do this with the on-going support of our funders the Premier League Community Foundation and EFL Trust together with the support of our Club and Trustees.”