€1,000 worth of gift vouchers has been donated by Aldi Ireland to the UCC Students' Union for its food bank.
The union opened the bank last Wednesday to supply food to students who cannot afford to feed themselves.
However, it had to close less than an hour after first opening because it had run out of food after a high demand by students for the service.
A Gofundme campaign subsequently set up by the Students Union has raised more than €24,000 for the food bank.
Following the appeal by the union for support, Aldi announced it was donating vouchers to the food bank and also announced that it is also offering its customers the chance to donate towards UCC students by rolling out a series of food donation points in stores in Glanmire, Blackrock, Passage West, Douglas Village, Grange, Ballyphehane, Wilton, Elysian, Mayfield, Blackpool and the two stores in Ballincollig.
Colin Breslin, Aldi Regional Managing Director said: “Aldi is deeply involved in the local community here in Cork and so following the national appeal by UCC’s Students’ Union, we are pleased to be able to offer support to students through our donation. As well as this, we are encouraging the wider Cork community to come together to assist students facing food insecurity by availing of our new food donation points across Cork stores.”
UCC Students’ Union President Asha Woodhouse thanked the company for its support, saying: “We are delighted to receive a donation of €1,000 worth of Aldi vouchers to help us provide UCC students with much-needed food supplies. Food insecurity is a huge concern for many students on our campus. These vouchers will allow us to provide them with essential, non-perishable foods with a longer shelf-life.”
The UCCSU bank provides non-perishable items including pasta, rice, and sauces to students every Wednesday in UCC’s Common Room, between 5pm and 7pm.
Aldi already has a partnership with the social enterprise, FoodCloud, since 2014. Since then, Aldi has donated over 2.3 million meals to over 344 charities saving the charity sector over €2.9 million.