The annual appeal aims to help those in need. It is usually split equally between one local charity and one international project. Worshippers from across south-east Hampshire and the Isle of Wight have given donations or held fundraising events in their churches since Lent to support the appeal.
This year, the Anglican Bishop of Portsmouth, the Rt Rev Christopher Foster, invited donations that would be split between local foodbanks within the diocese, and a charity that helps Christians in the Holy Land.
Foodbanks are run by the Trussell Trust, a Christian organisation that aims to combat poverty in the UK and Bulgaria. In 2011-12, Foodbanks fed more than 120,000 people in the UK – double the figure of the previous year.
During the summer, the bishop sent interim donations totalling £6,000 to food and basics banks in Fareham, Gosport, Havant, the Isle of Wight, Petersfield and Portsmouth. This helped in a time of financial difficulty for many facing the challenge of supporting and feeding themselves and their dependents. More will be sent to local foodbanks soon.
The other half of the cash will be sent to an ecumenical charity, called Friends of the Holy Land, which was commended by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.
Bishop Christopher said: “I want to thank all those who have given so generously and held fundraising events to raise money for this year’s appeal. The sums raised this year exceed those of recent years and I am delighted by the generous response.”
The 2012 appeal has now closed, but anyone wanting to make a donation can contact local foodbanks via www.trusselltrust.org, and the Friends of the Holy Land via www.friendsoftheholyland.org.uk.