Club's support of needy youngsters

A BOXING coach and his family have prepared free packed lunches to support their community after a plan to extent free school meal support was defeated in Parliament. Coach at Workington Amateur Boxing Club, Alan Murray and his family have prepared free packed lunches for those less fortunate in their community, leaving them outside the gym for anyone who needs them. Packed lunches were initially outside the gym just during opening times but volunteers decided to offer more support, opening the club on Wednesday to Friday for the meals between 12 and 1.30pm.

The campaign to extend free school meals struck a chord with Alan. Alan said: “Being a Manchester United fan I saw what Marcus Rashford’s doing, I was thinking about where I was brought up and what we did when we were boys, what we lived on.” So he decided to make up pack lunches with his family and give them away to those who may be struggling in the community.

Alan and family also donated food to the Northside Community Centre to support them in their efforts with vulnerable people in Workington. “I made a contribution to the Northside Community Centre because they do an amazing job.” Alan and family wanted to help people have a fighting chance during the punishing coronavirus pandemic.

“Nobody should ever go hungry. He said: “We left it at the front door so nobody would feel judged or embarrassed in these uncertain times.” Alan said: “The club were more than willing to help.

“We’re all volunteers we don’t get anything to do this. “We’re about the community I think that’s shown this week.” Alan is proud to say that his children Fern, Lilly and Elliot got involved and even wanted to donate their pocket money to the cause.

“Once we explained it to them it was a good learning curve.” The meals will be available throughout the half term. A spokesperson for the club said: “No need to ask, just help yourself, your neighbour or anyone else in need.”

Workington Amateur Boxing Club is just one organisation that has stepped-up to stop children going hungry during the half term. Workington AFC has recently launched a charitable foundation and first on the agenda is the Football Food Collection. Fans and members of the public were encouraged to donate any items of food they could spare to the collection which will be donated to North Lakes Foodbank.

The foodbank has bases in Egremont, Maryport, Wigton and Whitehaven. It is estimated that the North Lakes Foodbank feeds around 3,000 people across Allerdale and Copeland each year. According to Cumbria County Council, 2189 children between the ages of three and 18 are receiving free meals in education.

Across the county 8929 young people are receiving the support.

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