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Original 106 listeners raise more than 25 tonnes of food for local charity

Tuesday January 14th 2020 at 7:00 AM

The head of a North-east foodbank has praised Original 106 listeners for their “kindness and compassion” after the scale of donations were revealed.

As part of our Christmas appeal for 2019, which was backed by the Evening Express, we asked you to play your part in helping Community Food Initiatives North East, which is based in Aberdeen, cope with the pressures of winter by contributing non-perishable food, warm clothes and toiletries.

We can now confirm that listeners donated 25.1 tonnes of food, equivalent to 59,761 meals.

Head of CFINE, Dave Simmers, said: “The generosity of people was remarkable and every single donation has had a phenomenal impact.

“The festive time is one of particular financial pressures and for many that’s just untenable.

“But these contributions have made it possible for a whole range of people to have a Christmas they couldn’t otherwise have dreamt of and that cannot be understated. 

The amount collected surpassed last year’s amount by around a quarter, and Dave spoke of his delight.

He said: “It’s quite remarkable. Last year there was over 20 tonnes if I can recall, to have beaten that by over 25% is pretty fantastic and just shows the generosity of the general public and the corporates who have shown an incredible amount of festive spirit and compassion and care for their neighbours.

“I always say to people that you should imagine yourself in the other persons shoes as this could be any of us walking through that food bank door and that has an impact. People recognise that none of us are secure, redundancy, losing your job, mental health issues etc can all result in this. So there is an increased recognition and the public have now come good big time.

Dave added: “Poverty and the impact on low income families does not just happen at Christmas. The need goes on and a lot of people are struggling, but just that tin of beans, box of cornflakes or whatever you can afford or manage can go towards making life easier for people who are really struggling.

“So many people have shown a tremendous amount of festive spirit, as well as kindness and compassion for their neighbours, and for that we are truly grateful.”

Meanwhile, Martin Ingram, Original 106 programme controller said: “I’d really like to thank all of the Original 106 listeners who supported our appeal again this year. It was a bit different for us with our new studio location, but I needn’t have worried – we received an incredible amount of donations at Marischal Square, plus our many other drop-off points in the north east, and of course at CFINE.

“The generosity of our listeners shouldn’t surprise me because they’re all so lovely – but it doesn’t stop everyone at Team Original being blown away by the kindness and thoughtfulness of the listeners to Original 106. If the need is there for us to do it again this year, we shall be there!”

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