ANDOVER Foodbank has the support of around 80 volunteers who perform roles such as helping in the warehouse, driving the charity’s van to collect donations, office administration and supermarket collections.  Many of these have donated their time to the foodbank for over a decade and are integral in the day to day running of the charity.

In 2022 the foodbank was awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Service, the highest honour that can be bestowed on a local charity for volunteering and is equivalent to an MBE.

The foodbank’s volunteer manager, Lucy Williams said: "When I started my role in May, I was struck by how long so many of our individual volunteers had been with us. I have never known an organisation have such a wealth of support for so long. We are blessed to have a team that care so much for our organisation and turn up every week to give their contribution to our busy operation. Many of the volunteers have formed strong friendships over the years they have worked together with us. It was a joy to bring as many of them together as possible for our Christmas party and celebrate their hard work.”

Last Friday, Andover Foodbank held a Christmas party to thank volunteers for their efforts over the past year. The event, held at the church hall adjoining the foodbank, involved a sit down meal, a quiz and a visit from players of Andover Town Band for a festive sing along. 

Volunteer Graham Capper, who is also a member of the foodbank’s steering committee said: “It was great to get as many volunteers together as we could for the party.  We understand that, although our volunteers are there to help, the relationships they build with each other are very important. Sometimes we experience and deal with distressing situations as part of our roles here and it is vital that we are able to support each other as well as our clients.

The Wednesday team – from left  - Steve and Isobel Randall, Peter Acres, Lis Henry, Kim Nott, Kathy Szrama, Graham Capper, Pam Brown and Anne Brooks have volunteered for a combined 40 years between them.