Food Bank Donations: An interview with Fine & Country agent, Marie Fritz

Food Bank Donations: An interview with Fine & Country agent, Marie Fritz

Fine & Country Northampton’s Partner Agent, Marie Fritz, has been using her time in lockdown to devote to helping those in need by donating, collecting, and delivering food bank donations across the UK. Inspired by her dedication, we asked her a few questions to find out more about how all of us can help those less fortunate.   

 

Which food bank are you collecting donations for?

Weston Favell Centre Food Bank.

 

What inspired you to start collecting food bank donations, on top of the donations Fine & Country are making towards fighting homelessness? Is this a cause you’ve supported for a long time or since the Covid-19 outbreak?   

Volunteering has always been close to my heart and I’ve always done some form of volunteering throughout my life. I’ve helped at local animal shelters back in Canada, helped in different areas to fight homelessness and lived in Peru for three months volunteering in an orphanage.   

During this pandemic I wanted to do as much as I could to help the community, so I started offering to pick up food donations across the county. Our community needs our help right now and as long as I can help, I will!   

 

Who are you helping by collecting these donations?   

I’m helping local Northampton families who might have been so severely affected by Covid-19 that they’re having difficulty putting food on the table. It could be a single parent who needs help to feed their kids, it might be someone who’s homeless and needing a hand, etc. What I like about helping local charities is that the help goes to local families in need. So many people in our own communities need the help!  

 

What has the response been like to help with donations?  

The response has been fantastic! So many people donated and some even did a full shop just to donate it all. There are some really amazing people in our community.   

What was a lovely surprise was that, after picking up the first round of donations, many of the people who donated reached out to their neighbours to get more donations for my next collection.   

 

How can others in your community and elsewhere in the country get involved too? And what items are you collecting?   

If anyone would like to get involved there are four things they can do:  

1. They can contact me, and I can pick up their donations (if they live in the Northamptonshire area). 

2. They can bring their food donations to the Weston Favell Centre Food Bank or their own local food bank

3. When doing their food shop in Weston Favell, they can buy a few extra bits and drop it at the food bank straight after (the food bank is literally right in front of the Tesco in Weston Favell). 

4. They can go to the Weston Favell Food Bank website (or their local food bank) and donate money and/or apply to volunteer!  

In terms of items I’m collecting, it can be absolutely anything, apart from alcohol and fresh food. The food bank is in dire need of canned meats/fish/fruits/vegetables and any toiletries and hygiene products, male or female.   

 

What would you say to anyone who has never been involved?   

If someone has never been involved, I would tell them that now is the perfect time to start! This pandemic is affecting everyone but has taken a toll on some more than others.   

What I would ask parents with children is this: How would it make you feel if you couldn’t feed your children… if you had to see your kids go hungry?   

No child should ever go hungry and if there’s something we can do to help we should! We’re lucky enough to be in a better position so it’s our duty to help the ones in need. If one day we go through financial troubles, I would hope someone would be there to help us as well.   

I’d also say to them that they don’t need to volunteer all their time or spend all their money to help. Even just dropping a few cans and toiletries after their food shop helps more than they know.  

 

How is your agency currently helping in the fight against homelessness with the Fine & Country Foundation?  

Through our Northampton branch, we’re donating £100 to the Northampton Hope Centre (our local homeless centre) upon every completion. We hold events throughout the year to raise money and the Hope Centre has received two grants through the Fine & Country Foundation. Last year our office also donated 20 sleeping bags.  

 

What else would you like to add? 

I think teaching our children to help others in need from a young age is so important! I brought my four-year-old with me whilst driving around the county collecting donations and she absolutely understood what we were doing. When I asked her what we were doing that afternoon she replied:  “We’re picking up food to give to all the little boys and girls who can’t afford chicken nuggets and fries and milk!” Even at this young age, she was excited to help other children in need! It’s our jobs as parents to make the next generation a kind and giving one. 

 

At Fine & Country, we are very proud of our agents and the inspiring efforts they make for our communities. 

If you reside in the Northampton area and would like to get involved with food bank donations with Marie Fritz, please contact her at marie.fritz@fineandcountry.com

For more information about the Foundation and how you can get involved, please contact foundation@fineandcountry.com or call +44 (0)20 3368 8221. 

8th Jun 2020

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