January 2019 newsletter now available

12th January 2019

So much seasonal generosity, read on to find out more!

If you want to read/download this as an A4 newsletter, please click here.

Thank you for your Amazing Generosity

Thank you to everyone who has donated food and other items over this period. This season has been a record for donations with 7 tonnes of food being received at our warehouses in Ely and March during December, with 1 tonne of food donated to make up Christmas hampers. This is amazing!

As a result, our warehouses are currently full – we have temporarily asked the public to pause donating food, whilst we draw on supplies to service the very real continuing need.

Welcome to our new Ely Manager

Welcome to Ashley Handsomb – our new Ely Manager. Ashley joins us with a wealth of experience having previously dealt with vulnerable people as a Hostel Manager for ECDC.

Ashley works 14 hours per week managing our Warehouses and Distribution Centre in Ely and is already showing great qualities with her flexible, positive and cheerful disposition. We look forward to this new role developing and know that Ashley will contribute greatly to the work – she also likes to share her cupcakes! A picture of Ashely is shown in the Tesco Every Can Helps Frame.

Leaping for Joy

We’ve all seen the moment when everyone leaps for joy – a player scores a goal in an important football match, or a key election result is announced. It is a natural reaction where we respond with our whole physical body!

Leaping for joy is also a valid spiritual response, something we might do in response to the goodness of God to us. In fact not just us as humans – in the Christmas story the unborn foetus of Elizabeth leaps inside her womb when she is visited by Mary who of course was now carrying Jesus. The Bible also has deer and wild goats leaping as well as many other animals, plus even mountains too! The whole of creation it seems can move when God is acting favourably towards it.

Across the Ely Foodbank partnership we too have good reason to leap for joy. Both the harvest and Christmas collections showed amazing ongoing public generosity – with donations of both food and cash pouring in from all directions. Our warehouses are full to the point of bursting, and many hampers and other special Christmas treats were donated. Add to this specific giving that enables us to do fuel meter top-ups for clients struggling with their gas or electric, and we have more and more reason to celebrate. Finally we have been blessed in securing a new storage unit at Chettisham, coming just in time to resolve our storage needs for the coming months.

So as we arrive in 2019 we see God is shining His face upon us in many ways, making this snippet of a Bible poem very appropriate:

The Lord is my strength and shield – my heart trusts in Him and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and I sing songs of praise. (Psalm 28:7)

New Warehouse at Chettisham

We are delighted to announce that we will be taking on ‘overflow’ storage at Chettisham, replacing the storage facilities at the Witchford Baptist Church. We are grateful for the generosity of Glover’s Autocentre business ( that enables us to rent one of their units.

The Only Number that Matters

We love data at Foodbank:  so much at our fingertips to compare, reflect and project:

7 tonnes of food received in December, 50 vouchers at a Distribution Centre, 63 crates at the opening of the Tesco collection, 200 hampers given out to agencies and many more number crunching and reporting continues.  These all have their place and they do matter, helping us to do a better job, however the only number that our interest lies in is the number 1.

The ONE child who says he will now be able to make a stocking for his little sister, the ONE young man making a new start received food when his cupboard is empty, the ONE family recovering from a crisis can have a Christmas lunch. This work is built upon helping the individual and as we go into a new year with new numbers and new perspective, our prayer can only be that we treat every 1 with respect, love and understanding.

Thank you to our Generous Community

Thank you to our generous community for all your support – we couldn’t reach so many people without each and every contribution.

This is a great opportunity for us to thank a selection of local businesses, schools, churches and charities who have given food items, money or time over this period.

With many thanks to:

Amey Cespa


Burwell Women’s Institute

Cambridge Commodities

Cromwell Secondary College

Ely College

Ely Fire Brigade

Ely Funeral Service

Ely Methodist

Ely St Johns

Ely Tennis Club


Fordham Homemakers

Neale Wade College

Neaves and Neat

Network Rail

Soham Village College

St Mary’s Church Ely

Stretham Women’s Institute

Tesco Sainsbury Waitrose
… and also to the many individuals helping meet need this Christmas. Thank you all!


Back to News