Wigan & Leigh College has joined a national initiative to help its staff support and connect with local communities in and around the Wigan borough.

The Good for ME Good for FE campaign aims to generate £1m of social value via a sustainable programme of community action including volunteering, fundraising and charitable partnerships.

Over 100 colleges have already joined the campaign which builds on the huge success of FE Foodbank Friday. This saw colleges around the country come together during the pandemic to raise over £47,000 and collect more than 20,000 items for local foodbanks.

With demand for Foodbanks remaining high, this strand of activity will continue as part of Good for Me Good for FE, to ensure that communities continue to be supported with basic food needs.

In addition, staff who are keen to undertake voluntary and fundraising activities will be supported to do so. There is a strong link between volunteering and improved mental health – a current key priority for colleges and their staff following such a challenging year.

Tim AblettThe College’s Health & Social Care Lecturer, Tim Ablett used his skills and knowledge to do his bit in the fight against the Covid pandemic.

He has been volunteering with St John Ambulance since March at a pharmacy in Sefton, Merseyside to administer vaccines to locals.

In September, College staff alongside construction company, Greenmount Projects raised over £3,000 for the Wigan & Leigh Hospice charity after raising money by running the Wigan 10K.

And just recently, following on from recent successful foodbank donations for local charities, the College has started collecting food items again in support of individuals and families in need to be sent to charities including The Brick, Dogs Trust and Derian House.

Together, staff helped contribute to over 700 items as part of the Let Love Live campaign.

College Principal Anna Dawe said: “We are delighted to be involved in this exciting and important initiative. Working in partnership with colleges around the country means that we can have a really positive impact on both our own communities and those further afield.

“Colleges play a vital role as Anchor Institutions, which goes way beyond just education. Generating social value is key to helping our communities to prosper, particularly as economies begin to recover post-pandemic.

“We also know that helping others supports mental health and wellbeing – so this is certainly something we are keen to encourage via Good for Me Good for FE.”

For any other colleges wanting to get involved with Good for Me Good for FE or to find out more, contact Andrew Cox at London South East Colleges on andrew.cox@lsec.ac.uk or call 020 3954 4607

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