Community group Preston Here For Humanity has celebrated one year of helping vulnerable people.Advertisement
Since it began, the group has delivered over 42,000 hot meals and 130,000 bags of shopping to those in need. Hundreds of meals and cakes have also been given to NHS workers on shift.
To celebrate the first birthday, Preston Here For Humanity volunteers did what they do best, by cooking over 100 portions of spaghetti bolognese in their kitchen at West Preston Methodist Church in Ashton.
Evan’s Fish and Chips donated the cost of the meat, and cakes were provided by Jenny’s Cakes and Bakes and Beverley Salisbury.
Volunteer drivers, including some from Millers Taxis, delivered the meals to elderly shielders, a local retirement home, vulnerable adults, two homeless support hotels, and Royal Preston Hospital.
Read more: Young patients at Royal Preston Hospital benefit from toys and chocolate donations
Speaking about the group’s journey over the past year, co-founder Chris Murray said: “It started as me, my partner Kirsty and our five-year-old daughter Winnie just ensuring that our elderly neighbours had a little food.
“I feel really proud that it’s reached the heights it has, and of everyone involved. One of my proudest moments was when Winnie took boxes of cereal into her school back in June and helped them start a breakfast club.
“Winnie was recently commended at The High Sheriff of Lancashire’s Young Citizen of the Year. As a dad I’m extremely proud not only of what she has done, but what Preston Here For Humanity has made it possible for her to do.”
Another highlight for Chris was the Christmas project with PNE Community and Education Trust.
“We cooked 200 dinners on Christmas Day and PNE CET donated 100 hampers to accompany the meals, so it was a really special day.”
Developing its services further, Preston Here For Humanity recently started a pilot community volunteer initiative aimed at ex-addicts, young offenders, or anyone who wants to learn life skills.
The programme runs over eight weeks with 16 sessions covering every aspect of running a community group.
Read more: Great-gran hoping to build on 23 years of volunteering at Royal Preston Hospital once Covid restrictions allow
Chris said: “Our first volunteer on the scheme is 17-year old Rachel who is from Liverpool and living in Preston after a few bad decisions.
“She’s really loving her new chance to give something back, and I’m enjoying using my level two mentoring training that I hadn’t managed to put into action due to lockdown.”
Proud Preston. This, and many stories like it, show how the people of Preston are making a difference. Our Proud Preston section showcases all the charitable, kind, uplifting and great things about our city and the people who live here. #ProudPreston is alive and well, and there’s much to celebrate and be proud of, despite the challenging times we all face.
Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines
What do you think of Preston Here For Humanity’s achievements over the past year? Do you know someone who has benefitted from the service? Let us know in the comments.