Published: 22 December 2022

Darlington Building Society has helped spread festive cheer across the North-East by donating £8,000 to a charity distributing Christmas hampers to families unable to access food banks.

The financial support for Feeding Families is part of the Society’s annual 5% Pledge.

Feeding Families aims to tackle food poverty by working in partnership with other charities and schools, covering an area from Teesside to the Scottish borders.

The charity has helped around 44,000 families over the past year and will support more than 11,000 people through its Christmas campaign this year – with Darlington Building Society playing a significant part.

Chief Executive, Juliet Sanders, who founded the charity in 2017, said: “With the cost-of-living crisis hitting hard, we have not been receiving our usual level of food donations, so the £8,000 donation from Darlington Building Society has been invaluable in helping us to fill the gaps.

“Darlington Building Society has been a great supporter in the past and it is a great example of a community-focused business that genuinely wants to make a difference. We could not do what we do without the kind of support they give us.”

Feeding Families matches donor and recipient families across the region and has a small army of volunteers helping to pack and distribute the food boxes from its headquarters in Blaydon, on Tyneside. The boxes contain food staples, such as pasta and sauces, as well as festive treats, including sweets, cheeses, crackers, and Christmas cakes.

Darlington Building Society Chief Executive Andrew Craddock said: “Feeding Families is a remarkable charity, with a unique regional model that reaches thousands of people who are unable to access foodbanks due to health problems.

“Our Community Impact Group, made up of Society colleagues, help to decide where we should direct the donations, we make from our 5% Pledge. The group was very keen that we support Feeding Families and bring some much-needed festive cheer to those who need it most.”

At the final meeting for 2023, the Group approved over £60,000 to be split between eleven charities, taking the total donated to good causes by the Society this year to just over £240,000.

You can learn more about Darlington Building Society’s 5% Pledge, including how to nominate a charity or good cause, here.