Fresh fruit, veg for the homeless

A GRASSROOTS campaign to help Tamworth’s homeless people is gathering momentum, after a local business jumped on board to lend a helping hand.

Kate and Anthony Hawkins, owners of fruit and vegetable wholesaler Fast n Fresh, have pledged to donate produce to feed those most in need.

The generous offer comes after Tamworth woman Gypsy Weston called for volunteers to get behind her push to create a food-distribution service.

Fast n Fresh supplies produce to numerous restaurants around town but, inevitably, cosmetic blemishes render some items unsuitable for sale.

While the food rarely goes to waste, Mrs Hawkins said she and her husband were only too happy for it to go to people struggling to feed themselves.

“Anything of ours, like cauliflowers or broccoli, that’s got a mark on it and is fine to eat but we wouldn’t sell to a restaurant, we would be looking to donate,” Mrs Hawkins said.

“We’re just happy to donate whatever is needed at the time.”

As a nurse, Mrs Hawkins has witnessed first-hand the devastating impact homelessness can have on people’s health.

“I see a lot of people who’ve been neglected or are unable to look after or feed themselves, whether it’s due to circumstances or choice,” she said.

“You do become aware that there are people in the community who need help and even if you don’t have a lot to give, just your time is good enough.”

Miss Weston started the Facebook page A Little Help From My Friends to build a network of people able to collect and distribute food and other supplies to the city’s homeless.

Her ultimate goal is to find a place suitable to run a soup kitchen-type service where people can come each day and get a healthy and hearty meal.

But, in the short-term, she is hoping someone in the community will donate an old caravan that can be converted into a mobile food van from which food can be cooked and handed out.

To assist Miss Weston, go to the Facebook page A Little Help From My Friends and leave her a message.

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