Get involved! Send photos, video, news & views. Text WILTS GAZETTE to 80360 or email us
No presents, just parcels
9:00am Saturday 12th October 2013 in News
Volunteers at the Devizes Food Bank received a heart-warming donation from ten-year-old Bella Chicco who asked friends at her birthday party to help provide emergency food parcels.
Most youngsters would expect plenty of presents at a party but Bella, who is a pupil at St Margaret’s in Calne, asked her guests for parcels of food instead.
She collected 120kg of food from 24 friends at her party, enough to feed 12 individuals for three days or six families for three days.
Bella moved to Wiltshire a year ago and before that she lived in New York, where she helped in a homeless soup kitchen supported by her school from age seven.
She was inspired to donate to the Devizes Food Bank after it appeared on television last year.
Her mum Clare Crossley said she also wants to get a group of children together to volunteer for the supermarket food bank collections in Marlborough and Devizes.
She said: “She’s always been like that, at four she had me pay for things like a cleft lip charity. She would say ‘please mummy can we help the little girl smile?’ “In New York it’s very obvious where there’s poverty and there’s not, because there are people who live on the streets. Growing up there it was something she was used to, it was something she understood.
“When we moved her it’s a very different thing. You don’t see it in the same way.
“She’s so lucky to go to the school she goes to, and it’s very important they understand not everyone is lucky and even as a child you can make a difference.”
The next Tuesday Bella visited the food bank for a tour of the building and met an elderly gentleman who received a parcel.
Now she is working on a story about the food bank for her school newspaper.
She said: “In New York you see much more people out on the streets and it made me feel sad that I had all the things that they didn’t. When you go to the soup kitchen you feel like you’re doing something to help.
“After my experience in the soup kitchen I felt like I wanted to keep on helping so it felt really nice to be back in that kind of community.”
Alan Beamish, who runs the food bank, said: “It’s amazing that little girls can do that sort of thing. When I started this job three years ago it was just elderly church ladies.”
For more information on the food bank, visit www.devizesfoodbank.co.uk or call 07807 973605.