Stenhousemuir FC: delivering Christmas dinners to vulnerable

Stenhousemuir Football Club has unveiled its festive support programme which aims to spread Christmas cheer while supporting those in urgent need.

By Jonathon Reilly
Thursday, 17th December 2020, 12:30 pm

The Warriors have laid out a detailed plan to help the vulnerable and those isolating that will see its volunteers continue their free shopping and collection service and hot meal deliveries.

The club will also hand out free locally-sourced food hampers, a freshly prepared three-course Christmas dinner and a two-course New Year’s dinner to brighten up what it knows will be a challenging time for many.

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, Stenny’s Community Help Initiative has delivered more than 6000 meals to residents of Stenhousemuir, Larbert and beyond, made 3000 shopping trips and distributed 11,000 school lunches.

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Stenhousemuir FC's Community Help Initiative volunteers will deliver Christmas and New Year's Day meals to those in need. Picture: Michael Gillen.

In that period, its helpers have clocked up more than 25,000 volunteer hours.

The club was also awarded Community Anchor Organisation status earlier this year for their community-focused response to the Covid-19 crisis.

Iain McMenemy, chairman, said: “It’s been a really tough year for everyone but it’s been particularly hard for those who may be isolated, vulnerable or have underlying health conditions.

“Christmas is usually a time where families come together but that might not be possible for everyone this year due to the virus.

“Therefore, we at the club, along with a number of community partners and volunteers, made it our mission to try and pull out all the stops this Christmas.

“We have been continuing to support around 90 households since March of this year, looking after everything from shopping to picking up prescriptions and delivering two free hot meals per week.

“Thanks to support received from the SPFL Trust, we’ve just delivered over 50 Christmas hampers packed with locally-sourced produce from generous Stenhousemuir and Larbert-based businesses. This was delivered alongside our regular supply of two hot meals for this week.

“Additionally, we are really excited to announce that a full-three course freshly prepared Christmas Dinner will be delivered to everyone on our list on Christmas Eve. This will of course include turkey with all the trimmings.”

Mr McMenemy added: “We’ve only been able to do this thanks to the hard work from our community partners, the KLSB Community Pantry and Forth Valley College, who helped to source and prepare the food.

“The festive support measures don’t stop there though; we will deliver a two-course New Year’s Day dinner on Hogmanay which will include freshly prepared soup and homemade steak pie made by our own amazing club chef, Joe Britcliffe.

“We hope this enhanced support will spread a little joy after what has been a torrid year so far. Our teams were out delivering the food hampers this week and this became quite an emotional experience for those involved.

“Tears were shed by many of those receiving the surprise hampers, and by many of those delivering them too.

“With a vaccination programme being rolled out across the country, we’re all hoping for a brighter year next year.

“We’ve worked really hard within the club to help and support our community throughout this pandemic but we simply could not have achieved what we have without the support of staff, our community partners and our many volunteers.”

If you know some in need of support with shopping or food provision, call the club on 01324 466563.

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