Local woman to live on leftovers

Jane Spencer-Cook will be doing a sponsored "Give it up" week, whereby she will not buy any groceries from 7 February to 13 February and all donations will go to Larne Foodbank. INLT 05-053-PSB

Jane Spencer-Cook will be doing a sponsored "Give it up" week, whereby she will not buy any groceries from 7 February to 13 February and all donations will go to Larne Foodbank. INLT 05-053-PSB

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A Larne woman is set to give up grocery shopping and survive on her store cupboard leftovers for a week to raise funds for Larne foodbank.

Local woman Jane Spencer-Cook said that she was motivated to take part in the “Give It Up” challenge in order to increase awareness of the vital service the foodbank provides for those living in food poverty.

Jane, who works at local firm Mullhollands, told The Times: “I felt I could give up buying groceries to show my support for the foodbank and to gain understanding and empathy of what families face when they are in that situation. Even when I have had money troubles I have had enough money to buy food so I’ve never been in that position. People have trouble feeding their kids and lots of people don’t have family support like they used to. They don’t have anyone to turn to and I wondered what I would do in that position.”

Jane says that January is a particularly poignant time to embark on such a challenge as many families are feeling the post-Christmas financial pinch.

She continued: “It is going to be a challenge-I’m not stocking up beforehand with a big shop. I will be using my leftovers from previous weeks. When I was growing up if we had a Sunday roast you would have made extra meals with what was left but today society is more throwaway.

“We need to get back to basics and make a meal stretch for extra meals. We have problems in our society with food poverty but at the same time there are people who throw away excess food. People need to be educated more.”

Jane hopes to raise £500 through her week-long challenge, and is also hoping people will donate food and toiletries to the foodbank through the collection point at Mullhollands. She continued: “I hope this will raise awareness for the foodbank and its services which give support to people. I don’t think its services are used as much as they should be as there is still a stigma.

“People think they will be seen as scrounging which isn’t true. The foodbank is there to help people and they don’t have to struggle or go without.”

Donations of food or sponsorship money can be submitted to Mulhollands of Larne. Jane’s challenge will run from Saturday February 7-Friday February 13.