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Pandemic Volunteering Stories – Rev. Brunel’s Story, Cleckheaton Foodbank

Why did you take on this volunteer project?

We started Cleckheaton Community Foodbank as a ‘Churches Together in Cleckheaton’ project in April 2021 as a response to the start of the Covid pandemic, and it has grown steadily ever since.

What do you do in your Volunteer role?

I am an Anglican Priest – I am the Vicar of Cleckheaton and members of my churches (St Lukes, Moorbottom, St John’s and Whitechapel) have got involved with Covid response work including shopping for people, delivering hot meals and supporting them over the phone. We work closely with other local churches and working together with Cleckheaton Methodist church has played a massive role in enabling this work to succeed. We have had loads of support from Kirklees Council, the Jo Cox foundation and lots of local organizations and individuals.

What have you found rewarding or memorable about your experience?

It’s been great to get organized and geared up to meet a higher level of local need in an emergency. We have always helped people in a practical way, but it’s been smaller scale before. Facebook has helped us so much in mobilizing local support and catching people’s attention. It’s also been fun that the work has grown and evolved in an ‘organic’ way as different people have got involved. It’s been quite spontaneous and people have shown a lot of character and ingenuity in developing the foodbank. We have had help from so many kind people and it’s been enjoyable to feel that the local community has got behind us in unexpected ways.

Find out more

Cleckheaton Foodbank Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/cleckheatonfoodbank/

You can visit their JustGiving page here: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/CleckheatonFoodBank

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Covid-Safe Volunteering

If you are volunteering in lockdown, please make sure that you are staying safe and are up-to-date with the current rules and guidance.

From 29th March, you should continue to volunteer from home where possible unless you cannot reasonably do so. You can leave home to volunteer if you are not required to isolate for any reason. Please make sure that you are following the guidelines to stay safe.

From 12th April, we move to Step 2 of the Government's lockdown easing roadmap.  This is when charity shops, libraries, and community centres can reopen, and cafes can serve people outside, which will mean that more people will be volunteering outside their homes and we may start to get more new volunteering opportunities.

If you are looking for a volunteering role, please visit our I Want To Volunteer page.

Find out more about the lockdown rules for volunteering