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Burnham church helps tackle hunger and food waste with food distributing initiative

A church is helping to tackle hunger and food waste by acting as a distributor of food donated by a supermarket as part of a UK charity initiative.

Pam Rogers, churchwarden at St Peter’s Church, which became involved in UK charity FareShare’s initiative about 18 months ago, receives a text through the charity’s network to inform her when Tesco in Burnham High Street has leftover food.

The food is then collected from the supermarket and taken back to the church, ready for the community to pick up and take home.

Items often include bread, doughnuts, croissants, cookies, muffins, pastries, bread rolls and occasionally vegetables.

Pam said: “It is food that would otherwise go into landfill that is actually being redistributed into the community.”

She added that she receives a text two or three times a week.

“It’s just looking after the community, and also looking after the environment because if we didn’t distribute it then it would just be going into landfill.”

Pam added: “I think it’s fantastic, it’s a great initiative, it’s a win-win and also it raises the profile of the shops, it prevents the food going into landfill and it helps people who otherwise would not be able to afford it. And actually lots of stuff, it’s doughnuts and things like that, it’s actually quite a nice treat.

“I just hope it carries on as it does and we get more and more people in church and more and more people are able to take advantage of it.”

James Persad, head of marketing at FareShare, said: “We are pleased to be working with St Peter’s Church Burnham to help them assist more people in the area.

“The church does vital work in Burnham, offering much needed services and bringing people together from every section of the community.

“At FareShare we work closely with some 7,000 groups that now receive surplus food from Tesco.

“Through the FareShare Go service we are helping to feed thousands of vulnerable people, through our network of charities and community groups across the UK.”

A Tesco spokesperson said: “Our Community Food Connection programme links each Tesco store with local charities and community groups. We donate surplus food from our stores at the end of each day from every store across the country and we’ve donated 47 million meals since the programme began.

“We’re delighted to support St Peter’s Church who redistribute this food to the local community and look forward to continuing to work with them.”

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