Washington project wins £8,500 grant to help feed homeless and vulnerable

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A VOLUNTARY group which delivers food parcels to disadvantaged and vulnerable people has been dished up a cash boost.

The £8,250 grant to Washington Community Food Project was handed the cash today from the Big Lottery Fund’s Awards For All scheme, which gives small grants of up to £10,000 to projects that can make a big difference to people’s lives.

Joanne Dobinson, founder and secretary of the food project, said: “Our food parcels are aimed at anyone who needs them – it doesn’t matter if they are still working as there are people on low incomes who still struggle to make ends meet. Sometimes a straw will break the camel’s back and they come to us.

“Most of the people we send parcels to are ordinary people who have suddenly fallen on hard times.

“Perhaps they’ve recently lost their job, perhaps they’ve just separated from a partner and need money for a deposit on a flat, perhaps their boiler has broken down and they need money for a new one.

“We mainly work with agencies which refer people to us.

“Our parcels contain enough food for at least three days, although they should last longer than that. Our service is badly needed in these very difficult times.”

Pallion Action Group, which helps jobseekers, has landed a £9,550 grant to provide access to a computer to search for jobs and training as well as mentoring support to develop career plans.

Big Lottery Fund spokesperson Tessa Wiley said: “It is heartening to know that there are voluntary groups out there devoted to helping disadvantaged people, and we are very pleased to support them with funding.