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To tell you about a nice idea that’s easy to do? (Food bank related)

102 replies

autumnnightsaredrawingin · 22/11/2019 21:59

For those of you who donate to food banks. I was talking to someone today who said that if anyone is donating now, a really lovely thing to do is to include a couple of chocolate advent calendars.

It means they can include them in boxes for families with young children who would otherwise have no calendar. I realise they’re not too environmentally friendly with the plastic, but I think the idea of giving some kids who have a pretty tough time a little bit of happiness is a good thing.

So, not really an AIBU but something to consider if you are about to donate to a food bank. Similarly, a nice tin of Christmas biscuits or chocolates will also be welcome.

OP posts:
guiltyofa · 22/11/2019 22:05

Thanks OP, great idea.

WineIsMyMainVice · 22/11/2019 22:09

That’s a really good suggestion, thanks for posting this. I’ll definitely get some to donate...

ParkheadParadise · 22/11/2019 22:14

I did this last week
Selection boxes
Advent calendars
Boxes of celebrations, jelly babies and Haribo sweets.

DeathBySnuSnu · 22/11/2019 22:14

Lovely idea, thank you!

stucknoue · 22/11/2019 22:15

Check first! Ours has so many they have stated no more advent calendars

cannycat20 · 22/11/2019 22:17

Excellent idea, though I like the thought of making sure it's appropriate for the particular food bank - we usually try to put some nice biscuits or chocolate or other sweet treats in at this time of year if we can.

BlueEyedFloozy · 22/11/2019 22:19

Ours ask for things like boxes of biscuits, mince pies, Christmas puddings etc but specify no advent calendars.

This is because an advent calendar is counting down to a day which for most includes gifts and plenty of food and family - not all households can do this. It's basically building excitement up for nothing. It's a horrible sentiment but sadly I can see why it should be avoided in some cases :(

Sparklesocks · 22/11/2019 22:21

Yes, and Christmas general treats are also gratefully accepted

AutumnRose1 · 22/11/2019 22:21

I second the “check first”

I have volunteered in a couple of these and it can be a bit of a groan moment when you think what the actual alternatives are to a choc calendar

I’d say don’t forget sanpro!

TooMinty · 22/11/2019 22:25

Ooh, I usually do sanitary products and nappies but advent calendars had not occurred to me, ta!

57mama · 22/11/2019 22:30

I think a better idea than advent calendars would be a selection box or a tin of biscuits - as PP said, not everyone has presents at Christmas, especially if they have to rely on a food bank.

june2007 · 22/11/2019 22:31

Round here there collecting selection boxes, but they often want specific ones so worth checking to see what they do want.

DownWentTheFlag · 22/11/2019 22:32

Every year our food bank has so many left-over advent calendars they get handed out to all the kids at church. A selection box would be better.

autumnnightsaredrawingin · 22/11/2019 22:33

BlueEyed- wow I had not thought of that but now see it could definitely be an issue 😢.

Selection boxes etc is a good idea.

OP posts:
TooManyPaws · 22/11/2019 22:34

We have collection boxes for the food bank at work and there's been quite a few selection boxes and sweetie tins going in to them.

cheninblanc · 22/11/2019 22:35

I bought my daughters a chocolate advent calendar and a make up one this year. Ten years ago things were very different - we lived in work accommodation, shared a bed to keep warm and buying a calendar was out of budget. This week my daughters suggested donating their chocolate calendars, I'm proud obviously, but it reminds me of where we've come from and now I've seen your post ill add a few more to the box being sent to our local centre

Undercoverworker06 · 22/11/2019 22:39

Regarding Christmas treats for food banks- please can you start doing it now, as then the volunteers can start getting the treat parcels ready to give out nearer the time. It's no good taking a load of Christmas stuff in on Christmas eve, as it's a bit late then as usually they've given out the Christmas treats, alongside the normal food bank stuff.
Thank you.

cheninblanc · 22/11/2019 22:41

Undercover - good point. They've been collecting at shops and schools this week so great opportunity to drop stuff in with them

BlueEyedFloozy · 22/11/2019 22:42

Also agree with Undercover ^

Ours put out their reverse advent calendar notice on Nov 1st with a guide list of what to buy each day so they can organise/distribute throughout December rather than throwing a random chocolate Santa in with standard food parcels!

Alwayshangryhangry · 22/11/2019 22:43

Thanks, lovely idea!

TheLittleBrownFox · 22/11/2019 22:46

Can I also suggest not forgetting the usual food bank donations? Ours we overwhelmed with tins of roses etc and yet were dreadfully short of things like milk. They still need the essentials, even more so.

EdersonsSmileyTattoo · 22/11/2019 22:50

It is a lovely idea, but please check with your local food bank what items they are short of.

I volunteer at a community support project attached to our local food bank and we’ve just had 800 chocolate advent calendars donated to us by a local high school, which is fantastic and we’re so, so grateful but a quick call to check what is actually needed would be really helpful Smile

Dragongirl10 · 22/11/2019 22:55

Surely money is better spent on proper food? than just pricey chocolates, if l needed a food bank l would appreciate a nutritious extra meal for my family... l think it’s very important to include sanitary items and toothpaste as they are essential....

TheOrigFV45 · 22/11/2019 22:55

My son and I helped the Food Bank staff at Tesco this afternoon. We handed out a specific list of Xmas items that go in the boxes at this time of year. We got LOADS. It's worth checking with your local bank.

I have also helped at the food bank itself (as an advisor) and for months there would be boxes of Celebrations and advent calendars in the volunteer's kitchen and a random whole wheel of cheese. They can't be given out once past their sell by date.

I sometimes suggest to friends who ask that it's better to donate in Jan or Feb - that's when the bills come in. End ofJan is always a busy time for the Food Bank Sad.

Oh and please remember toiletries, especially for men and teenage boys.

Sorry...I've gone off on a tangent.

Havaina · 22/11/2019 22:57

Great idea. The Fox red biscuit box was £3 in B&M and Tesco, some people had out that in the foodbank trolley.

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