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12 September 2012

Feeding the hungry

Feeding the hungry
    by Heather Stanley

The One Can Trust, based in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, aims to facilitate community projects, the first of which is the One Can Trust Foodbank.

Since the foodbank began operating in early 2011, One Can Foodbank has now been privileged to feed more than 1,250 children and adults in High Wycombe and the surrounding areas deemed "in crisis" and unable to put food on the table.

After having been involved with feeding refugees in the Balkans during the late 1990s and after losing her husband of 25 years to cancer, Sarah Mordaunt, (pictured) One Can Trust's founder and project director, was called to action by God when she discovered just how many people needed food in her home town.

She said: "There are over 12,000 children living in poverty in Buckinghamshire which is seen as an affluent county, but High Wycombe in particular has areas of significant social and economic depravation.  The need for a Foodbank here was great and demand is becoming greater by the day."

Sarah recalls the first person the Trust gave a food parcel to: "The mum had been distraught because her 18-month-old had eaten a whole banana in one go that she'd been hoping to make last three days. Mum was overwhelmed by the parcel she received that enabled her to feed her whole family."

The Trust aims to give their help for those in crisis a personal touch, where possible delivering parcels directly to the people who need food.

They work with more than 30 partners who refer people in need to them such as Sure Start, the YMCA, homeless charities, the police, the Probation Service and many more.

Sarah continues: "Earlier this year, our friends at the Probation Service told us one of their clients had said without the food we had provided, they would have committed further crimes to feed themselves and their family. We want people to feel valued and loved and not labelled because of what they have and don't have. We really want to see social transformation in our town through the foodbank. Really, all we are doing is what Jesus said to do in Luke 3:11: feed the hungry."Sarah Mordaunt

One Can Trust brings businesses, clubs, churches and organisations together who all donate food and volunteer their time.  Sarah says:  "Our vision is that 'one can help change a life for the better' and we see this happening more and more, not only for the people who are fed, but the people who volunteer for us.

"Some of our volunteers say they are having their eyes opened and their hearts changed. One of our first volunteers joined us because of what she'd seen in the riots of August 2011. She said she was tired of the negativity and wanted to do something practical to make a difference.

"One of the highlights is seeing people who have been helped by the Foodbank, now donating food and their time to us. They recognise the difference living life generously made to them and they want to do the same for others, so communities are learning to help themselves.

"Being nominated for this award affirms my belief that when you hear from God and you take the wobbly step of faith into it, you have to be ready for the most exhilarating time of your life. As it says in Malachi 3:10: 'Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,' says the LORD Almighty, 'and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.' We're seeing this promise kept, every day."

More information on the Inspire Awards and how to make your nomination: Inspire Awards