By Helena Tomlinson
In the run up to Christmas, the MMU History Society collected food, toys and gifts for local Manchester charity, Wood Street Mission. The society invited both students and staff to bring anything and everything from their cupboards at home to donate to the food bank. In total over 600 items were collected which included tins, dried goods and toys which were later given out to local families.
Rose Rawstron, Treasurer of the MMU History Society and organiser of the event said, “I am overwhelmed by the generosity of both the staff and students at MMU. Everyone has managed to grasp the true spirt of Christmas by allowing us to help those, through no fault of their own, who wouldn’t have otherwise had a happy festive period.”
The Wood Street Mission is a local charity which works as a food bank for families in Manchester and Salford. It was set up 150 years ago by Alfred Alsop with the aim that every Christmas they would provide food, clothes and toys to those who were less fortunate. The charity is run by local people and helps around 10,000 families every year.
Claire Andrews, Social Secretary of the MMU History Society said, “It’s heart warming to know how many people are willing to give something back at Christmas. It is a lot more thoughtful giving a child a new toy or a family some food than simply donating a couple of quid.”
The charity runs all year round project and has expanded greatly since 1869 and is now providing food parcels all year round to local families. With around 900,000 households in the UK now relying on food banks to feed their families, it is charities like Wood Street Mission that really make a difference.
Ruth Clare, Chair of the History Society said, “The Wood Street Mission is a fabulous local cause and it’s been nice to give something back to the community. We are very grateful to all of the support of staff and students with our charity work. It’s lovely to know that at this time of year we can make people less fortunate than us a little bit happier.”
If you would like to find out more about the Wood Street Mission’s projects visit www.woodstreetmission.org.uk. For more information about the MMU History Society you can find them on Facebook and Twitter.