As our first campaign comes to an end, we would like to sum up the success of the “We Will Meet Again” goody bags and say a big thank you to everyone involved!
Following the tightening of restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Group Hug team realised that social distancing posed a risk to people’s mental health in our rural community.
Inspired by the Queen’s address to the nation in early April, founder Jonathan decided to create goody bags to help boost the spirits of those most in need lockdown and reached out to local businesses for support.
In the first two weeks of the campaign, the Group Hug team raised £3000 with the help of 38 local businesses and 6 resident donations. A second batch of goody bags was then sponsored by Campbells of Leyburn and NYCC locality funds thanks to local councillor backing.
Over the past two months, around 250 volunteers have distributed a total of 1836 Group Hug goody bags to keyworkers and isolated residents across the Dales and surrounding areas.
The goody bags contained milk, cheese, eggs, sweets, postcards, magazines, raffle tickets, a list of important contacts and messages of hope and positivity from local community groups.
Recipients included local people who were self-isolating in their homes; namely people aged over 70, those with long-term health conditions and new mothers.
We also reached out to NHS staff and local keyworkers such as supermarket staff, postal workers and the emergency services. Those nominated for going the extra mile and making a difference in their local community were also recognised.
In total the Group Hug team raised £4583 and distributed:
- 1250 litres of Home Farmer milk
- 11,016 Manor Farms eggs
- 18,360 biscuits from the confectionery market stall
- 20,000 chocolates and sweets
- 1836 booklets containing poetry and messages of hope
- 20,000 raffle tickets
- 1836 Richmondshire Today magazines
- 1000 Kingsley Klarion (Johnston Racing) magazines
- 110 pieces of Swaledale cheese
- 140 pieces of Shepherds Purse cheese
- 1836 hardwood love heart keepsakes
- 1000 Garden Room postcards and 250 diffusers
- 1836 Jonas Centre postcards and flyers
- 600 wrapped Whitakers chocolates
- 1000 Lynn Ward postcards
- 2 boxes of biscuits from CressCo
- 1836 Garden Room Tennants vouchers
- 2 bags of handmade chocolates from Cottage in the Dales
- 20 packets of Bath Fizz from Fizz
Once again, we would like to thank all of the businesses, volunteers and residents who got involved with the “We Will Meet Again” campaign. The response from the community has been amazing and we couldn’t have done it without you.
Below is some of the lovely feedback we received – it really shows what a positive impact we were able to make in the local community thanks to your help:
“What a lovely surprise when I came home from work after a few days on the wards” – NHS keyworker, James Cook Hospital.
“Thank you for the words of comfort and encouragement, God bless you all” – local resident.
“Thank you for your generosity and support at this difficult time” – Community Mental Health Team, Colburn.
“Our sincere thanks to all for the goody bag delivered to our home. What a lovely surprise. It certainly helped to ease tension at this anxious time” – local resident.
“Collected one for Alice today as she is a carer for the elderly, she was so touched. It’s a fab idea giving a real boost to those who really deserve it. Thank you” – Sandra Knights, local resident.
“Thank you for all your hard work it certainly put a smile on the faces of a great deal of people here in Wensley” – local resident.
“Thank you for the amazing raffle prize, I will definitely enjoy it” – Supermarket keyworker.
“Thank you for the goody bags we all received last week. It was a lovely thought and really cheered everyone up” – Resident Warden, Thornborough Hall Gardens.
“The kindness and generosity of so many businesses and residents in the dales is just unbelievable” – local resident.
“It was the most welcome surprise to land on our doorstep yesterday, and put a big smile on our faces – thank you so much!” – Laura Alderson, local resident.
“Thank you so much for the bag of goodies. It brightened up the day for an old girl feeling a bit lonesome” – local resident.
“We would like to take the opportunity to thank Jonathan Greenwood for our goody bag and his extremely generous donation for something to help us in this tough time… totally overwhelming!” – Team Emily.
“I’m extremely touched and delighted. Above all it was the kindness and thoughtfulness of the selection of goods, the feeling of local solidarity and friendship which is so important” – local resident.
Special thanks to our Sponsors
- Campbell’s of Leyburn
- The Co-op
- Johnson Racing
- Fairhursts Catering
- Yorebridge House Hotel
- North Yorkshire County Councillor Stuart Parsons
- North Yorkshire County Councillor Yvonne Peacock
Special thanks to our business suppliers
- Avril & Tony of Collet Fruit and Veg, Leyburn market for 720 eggs at cost price
- Brian Dobson (wholesale egg supplier) for arranging the 10080 eggs at cost price
- Manor Farm Eggs, for working tirelessly to pack and box all the eggs
- Glen Williams, Confectionary Stall at Leyburn market. 1820 biscuits at cost price
- The Home Farmer for donating 500 litres of milk and 750 litres at cost price
- Swaledale Cheese for supplying 100 rounds of cheese for the keyworkers
- Shepherds Purse Cheese for supplying 140 cheeses for the Key Workers
- Lynn Ward The Artist for the supply and printing of 1000 postcards and painting
- The Tennant Family and Paul Freeman for 1000 postcards, vouchers and 250 diffusors
- Simon Eastwood at the Jonas Centre for allowing us to prepare the bags in the Granary Barn project 2
- The Jonas Centre for their post cards
- The Cottage in the Dales for chocolates
- Gemma Whitaker from Whitaker Chocolates for 800 wrapped Chocolates
Special thanks to our business supporters
- Wensleydale Brewery for providing transport and driver to help distribute
- Mole Country Store for providing chocolates
- Dales PR and Marketing for arranging the projects PR
- Mike at Rustic Charm – 1000 Group Hug Hearts
- Wensleydale Ice Cream
- Milners of Leyburn
- The Kings Arms Hotel Reeth
- The Bolton Arms Redmire
- The Black Bull Hotel Reeth
- Tunstall Meat Company
- Taplin & Mageean Spirit Company Leyburn
- The Stone House Hotel Hawes
- Mill Race Tearoom Aysgarth
- The Wyvill Arms – Constable Burton
- The George and Dragon Inn Aysgarth
- The Dante Arms Middleham
- Fizz West Witton
- Wensleydale Brewery Leyburn
- John G Hills Leyburn
- JB Auto Repair – Wensley
- James Peacock – Bainbridge
- Dales PR and Marketing
- Halls Family Butchers Leyburn
- Salon Beautique Leyburn
- Andersons Take Away Co Middleham
- Keystone People and Business Support
- Lamberts of Leyburn
- The Black Swan Hotel Leyburn