The Halo Centre

This year, Feed The Hungry havetaken on responsibility for a 25,000square foot warehouse in Coventry, whichsupports feeding programmes both domesticallyand internationally.Coventry FoodbankIn 2011, after seeing first-hand some of the struggles thatfamilies and individuals faced in putting just a basic mealon the table each day, Gavin Kibble started CoventryFoodbank. At the time, it was a low-key operation thatsupported people facing food insecurity in and aroundCoventry. But very quickly, the work began to escalate.In 2016, Coventry Foodbank became a ‘RegionalDistribution Centre’ – or RDC – a large scale operation thatsupplied food in 17 foodbanks. It moved into a largepremise in Binley, Coventry, where a small number of staffand an army of volunteers worked to collect, sort, store,pick and distribute food. As well as the resourcesgenerously donated through local collection points insupermarkets, the RDC started taking bulk donationsdirectly from supermarket chains and wholesale suppliers.Jump forward another 5 years and Coventry Foodbank isnow one of the largest foodbanks in the UK. At any onetime, there is over 100 tonnes of food being processedthrough the warehouse. And Covid has only amplified theproblem of food insecurity and the need it produces. InJanuary, the Trussell Trust reported a 47% rise in foodparcels given out by its volunteers between April andSeptember 2020.Feed The HungryThroughout 2020, as well as supporting our partners internationally, Feed The Hungry’swork tackling food insecurity domestically has rapidly increased. As a charity, we areuniquely positioned in feeding both at home and overseas. Towards the end of last year, wewere approached about taking on the RDC warehouse in Coventry, and after a lot of prayerand discernment at every level of the organisation, we accepted the challenge.Practically, Feed The Hungry is going to continue to do what we firmly believe we havebeen called to; to share the Gospel and feed the last, the least and the lost. Our workinternationally is not being curtailed – it is ever increasing and we are committed tocontinuing to support the 330,000+ children and young people under the care of ourChurch partners through a global network. But we also want to be open to what God isdoing and where He is leading.The Halo CentreAs Feed The Hungry took responsibility for the RDC on1st February 2021, the building was renamed, ‘The HaloCentre’.The vision for The Halo Centre is a place that can supportpeople, showing them the love of God through practicalservice, and helping them to find a full life in Jesus. A bigpart of that is by acting as a hub for food redistribution.We will be sending containers of food from The HaloCentre out to our Church partners overseas, as well ascreating a space to be able to do food packing events, aswe did before Covid restrictions came in.Coventry Foodbank will continue to operate from TheHalo Centre and we are looking at increasing our capacityso that more food can be collected, sorted andredistributed through the warehouse, both in the UK andabroad.But food is not the only part of The Halo Centre; we have avision to provide holistic support. We want to journeywith people who are struggling, allowing them to be ableto access support with business mentors, work clubs,clothes recycling, and advice on welfare, debt, health andwellbeing.“The Halo Centre is, at its core, about transforming themost deprived communities; bringing life and hope bywalking with hurting people on their journey”, says GwynWilliams, Feed The Hungry UK’s National andInternational Operations Director. “We believe thatjourney is most effectively enacted when the local churchacts together. And this is not simply about getting food topeople, but a holistic approach to support.”We are excited about what God is going to do through TheHalo Centre in the coming months; the people who will bereached and the lives that will be touched andtransformed around the world in the name of Jesus.The Halo Centre is adistribution point forboth domestic andinternational aid.In 2020, over 34,000 people received foodthrough Coventry Foodbank.Over 200 volunteers regularly give theirtime to support Coventry Foodbank.Over 390 tonnes of food was donatedto Coventry Foodbank in 2020.