Feed Our Pack project celebrates three-year anniversary

Feed Our Pack project celebrates three-year anniversary Image

For Wolves Foundation, the flexibility to adapt to meet the community’s needs and provide the right sort of support and opportunity was never more apparent than during the pandemic.

As the country locked down, Wolves’ official charity stepped up, from delivering online education to calling people affected by loneliness, providing resource and activity packs to local children to donating thousands of vital items of PPE, and plenty more besides, the Foundation quickly got to work.

And one of the main and most substantial projects which emerged was Feed Our Pack, an initiative developed to deliver different strands of crucial support to people affected by the challenges which the pandemic provided.

Made possible thanks to an initial £500,000 investment, including a grant from the Premier League & PFA Community Fund, and swelled by fundraising from Wolves fans and events such as the Molineux Sleepout, Feed Our Pack launched in January of 2021 and has had an extraordinary impact.

“Feed Our Pack initially started as a response to the pandemic to support local families with food support, provide activities and free school meals to children during the holidays, and support to local foodbanks across the city whose stocks had been depleted due to increase demand on their services.”

The words of Wolves Foundation’s senior health officer Ollie Locker, who has overseen Feed Our Pack from its outset, and has witnessed at first hand the increased demand from the community during that time.

“Our output has increased significantly over the last three years which we can put down to a number of factors,” he explains.

“This includes the cost-of-living crisis putting pressure on many household budgets as well as increases in electricity and gas prices and food prices in supermarkets and wholesalers.

“None of the work we have done would have been possible without the support of our fantastic partners, Foundation and club staff and, of course, our wonderful Wolves fans.”

It has certainly been very much a team effort.

Beyond their fundraising and financial donations, fans have donated on a regular basis to the Feed Our Pack container which used to be housed on a matchday in the Fan Zone, whilst national redistribution charity HISCHURCH have become a key and valued partner.

Other invaluable support around the preparation and distribution of food parcels has been received from Wolves’ food and hospitality providers Levy and Head Chef Luke Hitchins and his team, and British Gas West Midlands and Midlands Truck and Van in Wolverhampton.

As a result of all this teamwork, with so many people coming together for a common cause, the scores on the doors in terms of the impact of Feed Our Pack has been phenomenal.

A total of 5,792 food parcels have been distributed, 133 tonnes of food passed on to foodbanks and a total of 398,140 meals served up.

And a total of 1,347 participants have been engaged in holiday activities across 300 different sessions, which has been a ‘personal highlight’ of the initiative for Locker.

He added: “Thanks to Feed Our Pack, we hosted holiday activity camps at schools and various venues across the city during each half term, allowing local children to attend free activities so they have been able to stay fit, eat a healthy meal and see their friends in a safe and welcoming environment.

“It has been fantastic to see so many children having fun and not being isolated during the holidays.

“We’ve tried to pack in as many different experiences as possible for our participants, including attending first team training sessions, cooking workshops with players from both Wolves Men’s and Women’s teams, trips to outdoor activity centres, nature walks, rock climbing, judo and many more.

“If you name it, we have probably done it!

“Feed Our Pack has gone from strength to strength and I’m now looking forward to carrying on the great work we have managed to achieve, along with some exciting new projects.”

Feed Our Pack was always planned as a three-year project, and those incredible numbers attesting to its remarkable impact show what a positive difference it has made in the local community.

But as that community has emerged from the pandemic, the challenges – whilst still considerable – have changed, and the Foundation’s work to provide support across these difference areas is, once again, adapting accordingly.

Feed Our Pack has played a substantial role in the life of the Foundation and indeed the community. But the initiative will now transition to Supporting Our Pack, a new campaign coming very soon which will cover many areas of the charity’s delivery of support.

"Of course it’s so important to give back to the community and Wolverhampton as a whole. It's great to be here and to show our support."

Maximilian Kilman | Wolves Captain and Foundation Ambassador

"As a lifelong Wolves fan, to represent the Club and Foundation is something I'll cherish forever."

Daz James | Wolves Disability FC

"Without Wolves Foundation I wouldn't be here today, that's for certain."

John Martin | Head 4 Health participant

"It is amazing to be out there meeting people and having some fun. It is really important for Wolves to have this connection with the fans and to see the happiness in their faces."

Toti Gomes | Wolves Defender

"Savannah absolutely loves the group. The staff are committed to making every single session fun and welcoming."

Natasha | Healthy Goals parent

"It’s special because it's my club and I’m so proud to be from Wolves as well. I can see the projects and all the work Wolves Foundation are doing and I know it makes such an impact, so to even be a little part of that and to help out where I can – it's so exciting."

Amber Sandhu | Broadcaster and Foundation Ambassador

"It’s huge for the school, I can’t speak highly enough of Wolves Foundation and the opportunities that they give us."

Mr Robinson | Woodsetton School

“I think all football clubs should be the beating heart of their communities and Wolves, through the Foundation, manages to do that."

Johnny Phillips | Sky Sports Presenter and Foundation Ambassador

"We get loads of different opportunities with a Premier League club. I feel really privileged to be a part of it."

Mustafa | Football & Education College Academy student

"Frank has Alzheimer’s Disease and when he was first diagnosed we felt lost and alone. Attending Molineux Memories is a lifeline for both of us; it is run by friendly, committed staff who ensure that everyone is included and enjoys themselves."

Frank and Alison | Molineux Memories

"To come here and be hands on with the kids is unreal. Working with Wolves and the Foundation is a blessing and I'm honoured. It feels surreal sometimes but it's the best feeling."

S-X | Music Producer and Foundation Ambassador

"It's good to give back what you got. Football and the Wolves Foundation help me, so I like to help the community."

Taye | Premier League Kicks

"Wolves is a fantastic football club, and they’re excelling off the pitch as well with all the brilliant community work that the Foundation does. The passion of the coaches and the opportunities to play are amazing."

Jack Rutter | Former Great Britain Paralympian and Foundation Ambassador

"Wolves has definitely helped my personal development, but now also helps me to develop people I work with. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the opportunities Wolves Foundation have given me."

Carl Ackasovs | Wolves Foundation

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