Exeter City Community Trust Festive Appeal to get food parcels to disadvantaged Exeter children

Christmas will be a little brighter for hundreds of disadvantaged schoolchildren across Exeter thanks to a newly launched campaign. 

In a unique collaboration, local, regional and national organisations have come together to provide food and gifts for families who have been impacted the most by the pandemic.

Health and wellbeing charity Exeter City Community Trust has partnered with Exeter City Futures, the Ted Wragg Trust and the Exeter Learning Academy Trust to reach those families most in need through the newly launched Exeter Festive Appeal which is raising funds to put together food and gift parcels.

National organisations who have offered to support the programme include the Premier League, Tesco, Co-op and Amazon. Crediton Community Bookshop, which is a not-for-profit organisation, has pledged to contribute a book to every parcel that is delivered. The Rediscover Church, which is based in the city centre, has contributed food to the cause.

The Ted Wragg Trust and Exeter Learning Academy Trust have identified at least 700 families whose children attend Exeter primary and secondary schools who are at risk of ‘holiday hunger’. Exeter CITY Community Trust will be supporting the distribution of the parcels to ensure they reach those most at need.

The team at Exeter City Community Trust, which is the partner charity of Exeter City Football Club, have been working closely with Exeter City Futures to pull in support for the campaign.

Jamie Vittles, chief executive of Exeter City Community Trust, said: ‘This year has been incredibly challenging for so many people. From the early lockdown where children had to be schooled at home, something we know had a huge impact on their learning, to families under pressure due to job loss or illness, this has always felt like a serious situation which needs a city-wide solution.

‘It has been fantastic to work with Exeter City Futures on this campaign and to see the amazing support which is coming in from both large and small businesses and individuals.’

Andrew Hardwick, managing director at Exeter City Futures, said: ‘Whilst the statistics around the number of families and children that are in critical need of support this year are shocking, it has been heartening to identify organisations who are keen to come together as part of a city-wide effort to support those in need.

‘We hope to raise as much money as possible and provide generous hampers of food and festive gifts for each of the families in need. Please contact us if you would like to support and we encourage everyone to share the fundraising page and donate, if they are able to.’

People can contribute to the campaign via a Justgiving page here.

Local businesses, supermarkets and grocery stores who would like to support the campaign should email Andrew Hardwick at Exeter City Futures on info@exetercityfutures.com.

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