The two-week appeal launched by Essex & Suffolk Water is being supported by its people, friends, and family – with the added pressure of school holidays for many families.
Hundreds of food items have been collected by the water company, which is being delivered this week to Maldon foodbank in Essex and Lowestoft foodbank in Suffolk.
Aimee Finer, Essex & Suffolk Water’s Junior Communications Consultant, who is helping to co-ordinate the appeal, said: “We all need a helping hand from time to time and especially now more so than ever. Supporting our local communities is part of our DNA and we do this in many ways, which we pride ourselves on.
“Food is something many of us take for granted, and yet we forget others don’t have the ease of grabbing something to eat from the cupboard or fridge.
“Supporting great causes like this is something I feel passionately about and do a lot of in my own time, and through the company’s employee volunteering scheme – Just an Hour.
“I feel lucky to be in a position where I can give back and help others and I know I’m not the only one within the company that feels this way. I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who has supported the campaign so far - from our people to their friends, families and loved ones.”
So far, items such as cereal, long life milk, tinned food and biscuits have been collected by the water company.
Essex & Suffolk Water also offers a wide range of free support, to help any of its customers experiencing difficulties with paying their water charges. This ranges from independent debt support, to payment plans and a reduced tariff.
Lisa Connell, Customer Service Manager for Essex & Suffolk Water said: "The worry of unpaid bills and getting into debt can cause a strain on people's health.
“It's important for people to know that they don't have to face their problems alone and that we are here to help, not just during the pandemic but at any time.
“We have many ways in which we can support our customers and have already helped many reduce their charges and provided an affordable payment plan to them. The hardest part is asking for help, so I’d urge anyone to get in touch if they need a helping hand or know someone that does.”
Rob Sefton, who is the co-ordinator at Maldon Food Pantry in Essex, said: “The demand for food items is at its highest now due to the ongoing pandemic. We really couldn’t do it all on our own so to have the help and support from colleagues at Essex & Suffolk Water is fantastic. The generosity of those who have donated items is greatly appreciated.”
For more information on how Essex & Suffolk Water supports its local communities, visit: www.nwg.co.uk/responsibility/community/ and to find out more on the company’s financial support available, visit: www.eswater.co.uk/services/extra-support/financial-support/