National award for ‘remarkable’ Morecambe food bank manager

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The founder and manager of Morecambe Bay Foodbank has been awarded the prestigious Guardian Public Servant of the Year Award 2018.

Annette Smith received the award for “outstanding public service and making a real difference to people’s lives”.

Annette was shortlisted alongside four other nominees for this year’s award for her work at Morecambe Bay Foodbank.

Following an online public vote, Annette was announced the winner at the Public Service Awards ceremony on 27 November 2018.

Having seen that families were struggling to get by in her hometown, Annette set up the foodbank from a cupboard in the back of a Methodist church in 2012. It now operates with over 50 regular volunteers from a community centre in the West End, receives and distributes over four tonnes of food each month and last year alone it gave out nearly six thousand food parcels to people in need including 1,229 children.

Annette said: “I wish that the Foodbank didn’t need to exist.

“We set it up with the express aim of closing it down again, but sadly demand is very high at the moment.

“This award is a reflection of the amazing work done by a brilliant team of volunteers without whom I couldn’t do what I do.

“I’m so honoured to receive this award but it really is a testament to an incredible team.”

The Morecambe Bay Foodbank is currently appealing for donations of food, Christmas treats and toys over the Christmas period this year.

To find out more, visit their Facebook page @morecambefoodbank.

Joanna Young, Chair of Trustees at Morecambe Bay Foodbank, added: “Annette Smith is a remarkable woman.

“I am so proud to work with Annette and the whole amazing team at Morecambe Bay Foodbank.

“This is absolutely brilliant and I am over the moon that she has been recognised in this way. Public Servant of the Year is a huge accolade and Annette is truly deserving of this outstanding award.”