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School in Ipswich sets up foodbank in wake of coronavirus crisis

PUBLISHED: 07:01 10 July 2020 | UPDATED: 10:13 10 July 2020

Alicia prepares food parcels from donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOL

Alicia prepares food parcels from donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOL

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Ipswich’s Northgate High School has set up a foodbank in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis as part of an event to promote greater respect and kindness in the world after the pandemic.

Alicia with donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOLAlicia with donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOL

The secondary and sixth form, in Sidegate Lane, form usually holds a community day every summer to commemorate the life of Jo Cox, the MP murdered by a right-wing extremist in 2016.

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The coronavirus crisis meant the event could not take place as planned this year.

However, with recent Black Lives Matter demonstrations relating strongly to the ethos of the event, the school said: “Although we cannot get together at school this year, we want to still connect together for good and to show solidarity with the current protests, making a stand against prejudice and racism in our society.”

Several donations have already been made to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOLSeveral donations have already been made to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOL

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Using the most famous phrase in African-American history - “I have a dream,” from Martin Luther-King’s 1963 civil rights speech – the school asked people who have contributed to the community day’s success to share their hopes for a post-Covid world.

The messages have been used on Northgate’s social media accounts, with one saying: “We have a dream that we learn from our past for a better present and future for all.”

Another expressed hopes that “a post-Covid world will be one in which everyone is truly equal, safe and valued”.

Alicia with donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOLAlicia with donations to the foodbank at Northgate High School, in Ipswich. Picture: NORTHGATE HIGH SCHOOL

However, as part of the event, Year 10 student Alicia also set up a foodbank for families needing help to cope with hardship during the current crisis.

There are two donation boxes outside the main school reception, with contributions welcomed from parents and the public every Monday.

Headteacher Rowena Mackie said: “Northgate foodbank was set up after one of our students, Alicia, recognised we could make a positive impact on our community.

MORE: 600 food parcels delivered to Ipswich families from schools’ ‘community shelf’

Through her initiative, hard work and determination, we’ve received generous donations from some of our community and are looking forward to providing food packages as an offer of support to some families in need.

“It was important to find a way to deliver our ‘I have a dream that a post-Covid world will...’ Community Great Get Together 2020 and in addition to the foodbank initiative our students have been working hard on projects promoting respect, tolerance and kindness for our future.”

Packages are now being created for distribution and people can request help by
emailing Northgate High School.


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