Local foodbank wins royal recognition with top award

Foodbank volunteers
Foodbank volunteers

The Norwood and Brixton Foodbank, run a group of volunteers, has won The King’s Award for Voluntary Service.

This is the highest award a local voluntary group can receive in the UK and is equivalent to an MBE for an individual.

The foodbank is part of the wider group of Trussell Trust foodbanks and is committed to providing food to people in need in Lambeth and beyond. 

Hundreds of volunteers have given up their time since the foodbank opened in 2011, with many giving up multiple hours each week. Some of the original volunteers still work at the foodbank.

This lifetime award follows the recent investiture of project lead Elizabeth Maytom and it comes at a time where the whole team has been working hard to provide emergency food and support to not only Lambeth but also filling gaps in provision in Croydon.

Elizabeth Mayton MBE said: “This award is a great honour for our foodbank and reflects the hard work and commitment shown over the years from our team.

woman with award
Elizabeth Maytom with her MBE

“I’ve always believed that we have a special group of volunteers at this foodbank who go above and beyond in their commitment to serve our community and this award is an acknowledgement of that.

“I want to thank our parcel packers, warehouse team, dispatch team, our drivers, our dietary callers and sign-posters, our hub workers, referral team, data team, social media team, corporate, schools and churches engagement teams, our trustees and all the other roles that are so vital in making our foodbank function.

“We know that there’s still a long way to go before we end poverty in Lambeth, but now is a time to celebrate.”

The Norwood and Brixton foodbank is one of 262 local charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the King’s Award for Voluntary Service this year.

Their work, along with others from across the UK, highlights all the ways volunteers are contributing to their communities and working to make life better for people around them.

advice session
The foodbank also offers advice

The award is designed to recognise outstanding work by local volunteer groups to benefit their communities.

It was created in 2002 to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee and, following his accession, King Charles emphasised his desire to continue the award.

Recipients are announced each year on 14 November, The King’s Birthday.

Winners this year include volunteer groups from across the UK, such as a social support network for disabled adults in Banffshire; a charity using a refurbished pool as a community hub in South Wales; volunteer doctors providing pre-hospital care across rural Cumbria and a village renewal organisation promoting sustainability, equality and social inclusion in County Antrim.

three women in aprons
Foodbank volunteers

Representatives of the Norwood and Brixton foodbank will receive the award and certificate from Nichola Lyons, Lord-Lieutenant of the City of London, later this year and two volunteers will attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May and June 2024, along with other recipients of this year’s awards.

Volunteer roles are available at the Norwood and Brixton Foodbank. 

1. Drivers and callers needed! To apply, go to volunteer.trusselltrust.org and enter the postcode ‘SW2’

2. Tesco Supermarket Collection: Volunteers needed in Lambeth and Croydon on Saturday, 2 December. To volunteer please contact office@norwoodbrixton.foodbank.org.uk

The food bank 10 years ago