- Pride may have been cancelled this year but LGBT+ organizers are still serving their city.
A British Pride is appealing to people to donate to its local foodbank to help families struggling this Christmas.
Chester Pride hopes to build on the success of its campaign last year. Its ‘reverse advent calendar’ generated 2,100 items of food and toiletries in 2019 for West Cheshire Foodbank.
However, this year the need will be even greater.
The last five years have already seen big rises in the number of Britons relying on foodbanks. But demand spiked as COVID-19 hit the country. And with widespread unemployment likely in the coming months, foodbanks are expecting unprecedented numbers needing help.
Meanwhile Britain is currently debating how best to tackle hunger in a way few could have predicted a few years ago.
Football star Marcus Rashford catapulted the issue to national attention when he called on the government to provide extra money to combat child hunger during the Christmas school holidays.
However the Conservative government refused. In response, local authorities, businesses and individuals around the country have rallied to help.
Chair of Chester Pride, Warren Lee Allmark, said:
‘After the recent government announcement regarding footballer Marcus Rashford’s plea, it’s become much more apparent that foodbank demand is, sadly, greater than ever before due to the pressure families are facing from COVID-19.
‘It’s important that as one of Chester’s largest community events, Chester Pride uses our platform to be the voice of those in need of the West Cheshire Foodbank.
‘This is an issue that affects our LGBT+ community, but also the wider community. We are happy to support the amazing work West Cheshire Foodbank do in supporting families and individuals.’
‘One tin can make a huge difference’
In an attempt to smash their previous record for collection, Chester Pride has organized donation points around the city. Meanwhile a local taxi firm has offered to pick items up for those who can’t make it to a drop-off point.
Meanwhile the Pride will use its ‘reverse advent calendar’ to show donors what items are most helpful. And its sponsors will match the value of every donation.
Chester, in the north west of England, is currently on the UK’s ‘high’ level of coronavirus restrictions.
Like almost all of the UK’s Prides, organizers had to cancel their event for 2020. However, they still hope to make a difference to their community.
Allmark said: ‘We would encourage as many people as are able to take part. One tin that can cost as little as 20p can make a huge difference to a person.
‘Last year Chester showed it’s generosity in supporting our campaign, and we hope even more of the city will take part this year and support someone in need this Christmas.’
The campaign will be open for donations 1 November to 15 December with more details on Chester Pride’s Facebook page.