Ipswich charity FIND (Families in Need) has hosted a ‘first look’ event to celebrate the completion of the building works on their vital new food bank. Local building firms, individuals and corporate fundraisers joined the charity for an early preview of the new food bank in recognition of their hard work and pro-bono support to refurbish the building, which is due to officially open in January 2020.
The new headquarters and food bank will mean the charity can continue to support thousands of adults and children in poverty across Suffolk with food, furniture and household items to help them live. Over 6,000 food parcels were distributed in 2018 and that number is set to be bigger in 2019.
The build project, on the site of the old sports changing facilities next to Gainsborough Sports Centre, was led by Barnes Construction alongside Castons, MLM Group, Johns Slater and Haward Consulting, Hooper Architects, Kadec, CCAS and Survey Solutions.
Other local companies and individuals who donated their materials or volunteered their time towards the FIND project include Genesis PR, who have managed the fundraising and PR, Ipswich East Rotary, Barker Gotelee, Plasufix, Ace Bugg, GBS, DPL. C&W Fencing, Gibbons, Cooks Doors, Fitsall Roofing, Wall Engineering, SEH French, East of England Co-op. Hudson Signs, Trucks ‘r’ us, Total Access Scaffolding, Skanska, Hopkins Homes, and Grahams of Ipswich.
Maureen Reynel MBE, founder of FIND, said: “It’s fantastic to see our new premises start to become a home. This will help us cope with the rising demand of families, children and individuals who find themselves in poverty and crisis in the Ipswich area.
“Thank you to the brilliant members of the building and construction trade who have made our new food bank project a reality, this would not have happened without them. We still have more shelving units to set up and will be moving our supplies into the new headquarters over the next few weeks. We’ll then be fully operational here from the beginning of January.”
The corporate fundraisers for the building appeal include East of England Co-op, Genesis PR, Suffolk Community Foundation, Ipswich Building Society, Ipswich East Rotary, Greyfriars Roundtable, The Ipswich Mayor’s Charity, Ipswich School, Scrutton Bland Foundation, Playtech, Hadleigh Baptist Church, 964 Consulting, New Zealand In Depth Travel, and the University of Suffolk.
Local PR and marketing agency Genesis launched and ran the FIND 50 Lifeline Appeal in December 2017 as a call for 50 workplaces, schools, groups or individuals to each raise £2,000 towards the costs of funding the new FIND foodbank in Ipswich.