More than 750 trolleys of food donated to those in need

25 January 2016: Countdown customers donated more than 750 trolleys full of food to help families in need over the Christmas period, through Countdown’s annual Food Rescue Appeal.

The appeal saw customers make food donations in marked trolleys in-store to local Salvation Army food banks throughout December in all Countdown stores across New Zealand.

Countdown Porirua customers donated the most, filling 15 trolleys with food followed closely by Countdown Whangarei with 12 trolleys, Countdown Mt Roskill with 11 trolleys and Countdown Masterton where customers donated a total of nine trolleys.

All 183 Countdown stores also donated $500 of groceries to their local Salvation Army centre, contributing more than $90,000 of groceries to The Salvation Army’s food banks nationally.

Customers also donated more than $25,000 to The Salvation Army through coin donations in stores.

The Salvation Army’s National Secretary for Social Services, Major Pamela Waugh, said that without the support of Countdown shoppers, The Salvation Army would not have been able to support the large number of families who needed its help at Christmas.

“We already knew New Zealand is among the most generous countries in the world, and during the holiday season Kiwis again proved that to be true! Thanks to that generosity - and the ease with which people can give through Countdown’s Food Rescue Appeal – more than 3,500 families that would otherwise have had a meagre Christmas were able to enjoy a special day,” says Pam.

“Food donated since Christmas means we can also help families struggling with extra school holiday and back-to-school costs while still trying to stay on top of their everyday bills.”

Pat McEntee, Countdown’s Acting Managing Director, says the Food Rescue Appeal is one of the important ways Countdown stores can use their presence in local communities to make life a little better for Kiwi families.

“Christmas can be the hardest time of year for some families, and is The Salvation Army’s busiest time of year. This year’s annual appeal was a huge success thanks to the overwhelming support of the Countdown team and customers throughout New Zealand.

“Countdown is proud to support to The Salvation Army through these annual appeals, and it’s great to see that our customers have got behind this appeal,” says Mr McEntee.

In 2015 Countdown teamed up with The Salvation Army and web developer – Lucid to create and launch New Zealand’s first online foodbank. Since the national launch of The Foodbank Project in December, more than 12,000 items have been donated to The Salvation Army.

The Countdown Christmas Food Rescue Appeal is part of an ongoing programme that provides more than $3.5 million in food each year to food bank partners including The Salvation Army, Countdown’s national food bank partner.

| Keywords: Charity