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“Community fridge” scheme helps those in need

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A MAJOR supermarket chain is supporting a “community fridge” scheme in Warrington started by a local resident.
Ames Pilkington, a volunteer dedicated to helping people following an accident and subsequent battle with alcoholism came up with the idea of the “Hapi Hub.”
The project offers free fresh food to those in need from four centres located across Warrington. The scheme has benefited from the help and support of the supermarket chain and its Warrington community colleague, Liz Cotterill.
Liz helped Ames to set up the first community fridge and has since helped with fundraising and securing regular food donations from three stores in Warrington.
In addition, Liz introduced Ames to charity group FareShare who, along with foodbank provider The Trussell Trust, are set to receive £20 million over the next three years from the supermarket with the aim of helping people in the UK living in food poverty.
Ames said: “Liz has helped me for the last couple of years and her support is absolutely immense. She’s kept me grounded, she’s kept me informed and she’s even helped me grow as a person to get Hapi Hub to where we are now. I can’t speak highly enough of the help she’s provided. Liz goes above and beyond, and we’ve really become close friends.”
Ames was involved in an accident 15 years ago which left her disabled, which in turn caused her to drink to cope and as a result, gain weight. Hapi Hub has given her a new focus and has allowed her to transform her life.
Community colleague Liz was impressed by Ames’ commitment to helping residents in the area and helped her raise money to fund the first fridge.
She said: “Ames is a real character – extremely hard-working. She genuinely wants to make a difference to the local community. She’s a true community legend – inspiring and full of kindness. We’re lucky to have people like her.”
Now the project has four community fridges and a community lunch club which makes a two course meal available for £3.00.
The four Hapi Hub community fridges are at Orford Community Hub, Fearnhead Cross Youth and Community Centre, Whitecross Community Centre and St Margaret’s Latchford’s Community Hub.

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