During the current pandemic, the economic and social impact is growing daily.
At Tata Consumer Products we are contributing to the care packs for the 1.5m most vulnerable people in the UK and continuing to supply tea to frontline health and emergency staff and patients within the NHS. This along with many other smaller donations and offers of support are being made by the company and individual colleagues at this difficult time.
Within our own industry our teams have been working hard to ensure that we can continue to supply tea to the nation, doing our bit to help this ‘nation of shop keepers’ to remain as operational as normal so that we can get food and drink into our homes.
With so many in need in the UK, it is hard to single out a single cause for significant help, but with a close fit to our own industry we have chosen to support GroceryAid with a £150,000 donation.
GroceryAid is a charity which provides invaluable help and support to people who work, or have worked, within the grocery industry either for a retailer, wholesaler or manufacturer.
Whether big or small, grocery is never an easy business. For many years Tata Consumer Products and other colleagues in retail and manufacturing have supported this charity. Formed in 1857 it provides practical, emotional and financial help to grocery workers in need, to those from the largest factory through the supply chain to the smallest store.
Each year, GroceryAid provides emotional, practical and financial support through the 24/7 freephone Helpline and website. It provides free legal and financial advice; relationship counselling; welfare support; arranges respite care for carers; advice on health and wellbeing; the list is endless. In 2019 close to 16,000 people benefited from GroceryAid.
Last year the charity spent £4.25m on welfare payments. This and the cost of its other services and support are largely supported by donations and fundraising events, but because of the current Coronavirus crisis all of this year’s events, usually attended by 10,000 people have had to be cancelled. This will leave the charity with a shortfall in the funds that it needs at a time when calls on its services are growing significantly as the wider impacts of social distancing, reduced economic circumstances and health worries hit those working within the grocery industry and their families.
“We value our people and appreciate the contribution they are making to our own business and to helping others during this crisis and I am proud that we are able to provide this support to GroceryAid at a time when those working in the industry are most in need,” Says Graeme Karavis, UK Managing Director, TATA Consumer Products.
“We are extremely grateful to the donations being made to us,” adds Steve Barnes, Chief Executive of GroceryAid. Tata Consumer Products’ generosity will be vital in helping us sustain support at a time when it is most needed in our trade. A prime example of this is usage of our Helpline which has accelerated since mid-March with a third of calls specifically about Covid-19 and 70% of all callers accessing immediate emotional support through our trained counsellors,”
There are a number of ways to support GroceryAid through this unprecedented crisis, either in the form of donations or by volunteering to support the trade charity – you can find more information on at www.groceryaid.org.uk.”