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In a bid to help tackle poverty, one of the biggest ever food bank donations in the country will be made at the Malvern Autumn Show as it becomes the first of its kind to host a huge harvest festival.

Run together with charity the Trussell Trust, Three Counties will host this groundbreaking initiative on September 28 and 29, and help give back to its community.

With 65,000 people expected to attend the event, visitors are being asked to bring items to donate to the harvest which will be one of the biggest donations food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network have ever received.

Run in association with Westons Cider Mill, Malvern Autumn Show is a two-day celebration right in the heart of the beautiful British countryside and will be a fantastic harvest festival brimming with special guests, giant vegetables, stunning floral displays and family entertainment.

There will be a dedicated donation point on the Family Green area where people will be able to drop off their donations.

“The traditional harvest festival is something many people won’t have participated in since they were at school, but with real people from our community in real need, we thought we should look at giving something back,” said Diana Walton, Head of Shows at the Three Counties Showground.

“This idea is getting back to the real meaning of harvest, community and giving. Our exhibitors and staff are already donating, and we really would like everyone to bring something along and help make this a success.

“This is the 25th edition of the Malvern Autumn Show and what a way to mark the occasion than feeling at one with the communities that surround us.”

Between April 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019 food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network handed out emergency food supplies to 45,824 children and adults in the Gloucestershire and Worcestershire areas alone, and 142,234 across the West Midlands.

There has also been a rise in schools in England setting up food banks. The National Governance Association’s annual survey released earlier this month found 8% of governors were in schools which had food banks – up from 7% last year.

Sarah Barcham, area manager at the Trussell Trust said: “When we were approached by the team at Three Counties to hold a harvest festival donation point at Malvern Autumn Show we were more than happy to help to make sure it was going to the people who need it most.

“No one in the UK should need to turn to a food bank. But during the last year across our network we’ve seen a 19% increase in foodbank use – that’s 1.6 million emergency food supplies to people in crisis. More than a third of these went to children.

“We’re working towards a future where no one needs a food bank, but until we reach that point, donations from the public are vital. It’s not just food that people at food banks need – if you don’t have any money for the basics, you’re likely to also need toiletries, household items, period products or baby supplies, so food banks welcome donations of these too.”

The Trussell Trust has issued a list of items which food banks in its network are it is in need of:

Food – cereal, soup, pasta, rice, tinned tomatoes, pasta sauce, lentils and pulses, tinned meat, tinned vegetables, tea and coffee, tinned fruit, biscuits, UHT milk and fruit juice.

Non-food – Deodorant, toilet paper, shower gel, shaving gel, shampoo, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand wipes, laundry liquid detergent, laundry powder, washing up liquid, sanitary towels, tampons, nappies, baby wipes and baby food.

Please only bring non-perishable goods that can be made into food parcels in advance as the collection will be unable to take donations of fresh food.

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