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Foodbank fundraiser: Boxing Day Swim

I’m doing a Boxing Day swim in Whitley Bay and raising cash for a local foodbank in the run up to Christmas. I’d love your support.

Today is the first day of Advent. I’m doing a reverse Advent calendar and putting aside an item of food each day during the lead up to Christmas.

I’ll also be doing the Boxing Day swim at Longsands beach, Tynemouth with my kids. The Posh Geordie has promised to take photos.

We’ll head into the water around 10am and spend up to 15 minutes in the North Sea in a bid to swim off the indulgences of the festive season.

We’re collecting groceries and raising cash for the The Bay Foodbank in Whitley Bay.

Please donate to my foodbank fundraiser

If you’ve found my blog useful over the past 12 months I’d really appreciate a donation, and if not I’d appreciate a donation anyway.

£5 would great, £10 would fantastic, and £20 would be amazing.

I want to keep this as straightforward as possible. Please send donations via PayPal to me at stephen.waddington@gmail.com, or by post to me at 85 Heathfield, West Allotment, Newcastle NE27 0BP.

Cash donations also work if you see me out and about.

Every penny that we raise will be used to buy food for the Bay Foodbank.

I’ll publish a list of donations and audit trail, and share photos of the groceries being delivered to the foodbank.

So far we’ve done one shop and delivered groceries to the foodbank via Sainsbury’s in Whitley Bay. Thanks to Charlotte Woodward, Michelle Goodall and Ella Minty for their donations.

The story of the rise of foodbanks in the UK

The story of the rise of foodbanks in the UK was told in Ken Loach and Paul Laverty’s film I, Daniel Blake. It’s a powerful comment on modern Britain.

It tells the story of a 59 year old joiner who is forced to go back to work after a heart attack, and a single mother of two young children.

The unlikely pairing fall between the cracks of the welfare state and become reliant on food banks for basic groceries.

Critics, including the UK government, have called out the film’s portrayal of the state as extreme. Advocates that help people in crisis, such as the Citizens Advice Bureau, say that it’s fair.

An issue spotlighted by the film that you can’t challenge is our increasing reliance as a country on food banks.

Between April and September 2017, foodbanks managed by the Trussell Trust distributed 586,907 three day emergency food supplies to children and adults in crisis across Britain.

It’s a 13% increase on the same period last year, and if you add independent foodbanks to the Trussell figures you can almost certainly double the numbers.

Foodbanks in areas of full Universal Credit rollout have seen as much as a 30% increase in demand for services as a result of a six-plus week waiting period.

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Stephen Waddington

Partner and Chief Engagement Officer, Ketchum and Visiting Professor in Practice, Newcastle University.

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