Charity delivers 4,000th meal thanks to coronavirus grant

By Ben Carey on 30 July, 2020

Malmesbury charity Heals, which offers an array of support to the community, has delivered its 4,000th meal since the start of the pandemic.

The organisation has been working tirelessly since lockdown to offer a wide range of free services to those in need throughout the local area.

Supported by a coronavirus appeal grant, the charity offers shopping errands, prescription deliveries, activities for young people, befriending phone calls, debt advice and refurbished laptops for low income families.

It has also been delivering hot meals twice a week to older people who have been shielding and to low income families throughout the pandemic.

Heals has been awarded £10,000 from the Wiltshire Community Foundation’s Coronavirus Response Fund, which has now raised more than £1 million and has so far distributed almost £700,000 to more than 170 groups.

Heals Chairman of Trustees, Gavin Grant, said, “The grant support has been absolutely vital. Heals would not be in existence without the aid of the Wiltshire Community Foundation and therefore this work would not be happening.

“The meals have been a big challenge. Owners Dave and Nicola Moody at The Red Bull have been providing them at cost price – they have been absolutely fantastic.”

The group was also supported earlier in the pandemic by The Calcot Manor Hotel and Spa.

Gavin added, “The hotel was completely shut down but they didn’t furlough ten of their chefs so they could produce meals for us. The owners didn’t want to be acknowledged, they just said to thank Richard Davies the Executive Chef and his team.”

More than 40 households have been given laptops via the charity, refurbished by IT experts at Atema in Malmesbury.

Fiona Oliver, the Community Foundation’s interim co-Chief Executive, said, “The story of brilliant community groups suffering a devastating drop in income at exactly the time they are being asked to meet rising demand for their help is one we’ve heard right across the county. We are so pleased to be able to fund this kind of work and to see it having such a dynamic impact on people.”

To find out more about Heals’ services via the charity’s website.

Click here to donate to the Wiltshire and Swindon Coronavirus Response Fund or to find out how to apply for a grant.

Pictured: Heals Trustee Karen Franklin who is managing the Red Bull Inn meals delivery service.