A VOLUNTEER treasurer is needed to support the vital work of a West Devon food bank.
The vacancy has occurred after the resignation of a long-serving worker, who helped the food bank start up more than ten years ago, due to ill health.
John Medland, 74, a former West Devon Borough Council officer, is joined by his wife Linda, who has stepped down as Tavistock Food Bank volunteer co-ordinator, also having joined at the start of the project which has seen demand rocket from people in ‘food poverty’.
Rob Weston, acting chair of the food bank’s trustees, commended John’s commitment to the food bank: ‘John was instrumental in getting the food bank established in Tavistock and over the past ten years, John has kept a watchful eye on all the income and expenditure.
‘Initially, there were only a few transactions but with the increase in donations and the number of households needing our support, understandably the workload has increased.’
Rob added: ‘We are obviously looking for someone who has some experience in keeping accounts, preferably in the charity sector. With the move to online banking we also need someone with experience of banking online and working with spreadsheets. As a registered charity the Tavistock Foodbank is required to submit accounts to the Charity Commission each year.’
John, who retired from the council as a revenue and benefits officer, is now committing himself to his hobby of land and seascape painting, with any sales going to Parkinson’s UK, the charity which offers support to anyone who has the condition.
John said: ‘I will miss the work for the food bank because it’s so important. Most of all I’ll miss the people involved. It was a great team but I’ll be able to spend more time with Linda. We walk and play table tennis. I’m now painting more and can make the most of my time while I’m healthy enough.’
He began at the food bank as a warehouse volunteer, but became treasurer after the role became vacant: ‘My workload increased as donations grew with demand. Donations from businesses increased since covid.’
Linda said: ‘My role grew and grew with the years. It was very rewarding supporting people in need, but in the end me and John agreed to spend more time together, while JHohn’s health allows him.’
Anyone with the required skill set and interested in this unpaid volunteer role, is asked to contact the food bank on 07941 436149 or email [email protected] to request further details and an application form.