Member of Parliament for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, Dr Dan Poulter, today visited Castle Hill Community Centre in North West Ipswich to see first-hand the fabulous work going on to support some of the most vulnerable in our communities.
Borne out of need during the first wave of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Food Pantry was created to support residents living in North West Ipswich, providing access to basic food supplies and wider community support. The project started with deliveries of a free fruit and vegetable bundle worth up to £10, and due to demand, the team led by Ange Stroud and Garath Jones at Castle Hill Community Centre, alongside Trustees of the Big Local Trust, soon expanded the support to include meat and freshly baked goods. The project has been supported with grant aid from North West Ipswich Big Local Trust and since autumn 2020, the project has attracted further support from the National Lottery Community Fund, ASDA, Morrisons and a number of generous business donations.
Dr Poulter was delighted to join the team today, helping to deliver some festive cheer with the distribution of special Christmas Hampers and gifts for young and old alike. Alongside the weekly food deliveries, todays special Christmas Hampers contained luxury items and there were special gift bags for children too.
Speaking about the visit, Dr Poulter said “I was heartened to see the outstanding work going on at Castle Hill Community Centre and would like to congratulate Ange, Garath, North West Ipswich and the fantastic volunteers, all of whom give selflessly of their time and work tirelessly to help residents in the local community.”
“Here in Suffolk we have a proud track record of rallying together to support our local communities and this project is a fantastic example of what can be achieved when people come together to help others in need. I was pleased to play a small part in helping the team today and enjoyed meeting and talking with so many residents in the run up to Christmas.”