A Newhall school which is lending its support to the Burton Mail's Feed Our Families campaign, has backed the appeal saying its work is "vital for making communities stronger".

William Allitt School, in Sunnyside, Newhall, is the latest organisation to show its support for the appeal, which aims to feed people in Burton and South Derbyshire who are struggling to put food on the table during the Christmas period.

This year, the fourth the appeal has been run, donations will be distributed between four vital causes which work to support those people in society who need a helping hand.

These are Burton YMCA and South Derbyshire Council for Voluntary Services (CVS), as well as Burton’s Salvation Army and The Eaton Foundation, which is also based in the town.

Last year was the most successful campaign ever, with a record 15,000 food items donated, feeding around 1,000 families over Christmas, thanks to Burton Mail readers.

This year it is more important than ever as food banks in Burton and South Derbyshire are being used more than ever before.

Lisa Proctor, head of PR and communications at the school, said it was important that those within the school "work together to support one another in times of need".

She said: "We realise that now more than ever, we all need to support one another and understand that there are people in need of some extra help.

"We want to pass this message on to our students and encourage them to get fully involved in the Feed our Families campaign.

"As a school, we have been involved in something like this before and many of our staff regularly take part in charitable fund-raising events.

"We are going to be sharing posters with our students and their families on social media and around our school and discussing the campaign with some students in their assemblies to get the message across.

"We think this kind of work is vital for making communities stronger – working together to support one another in times of need.

"Christmas can put even more financial pressure on families and if there is just one time in the year that you may be able to donate something, however small, it is now.

"By working together, every small item donated will make a difference to a family in need of some extra support."

How can you donate to Feed Our Families?

For many people Christmas is a happy time, but for some it can be anything but.

A few pounds could be the difference between a family in need eating or going hungry. Just 50p could buy a tin of soup, and help keep a child warm and fed.

So where can you donate? We are appealing for people to pop one extra tin in their weekly shop and donate that. Of course, if you can afford more that would be brilliant.

There will be drop-off points at Burton in Sainsbury's, in Union Street, and Sainsbury's, in Civic Way, Swadlincote, with more businesses soon expected to get involved.

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If you are a pupil at a local school, check if there is a donation point there and if not, ask your teachers to get your school involved.

Punch Taverns is backing the campaign, as are schools including Granville Academy and Paulet High School.

We want you, our generous readers, to also donate, whether that be setting up a collection point at your youth club or in the pub. If you want to get involved, please contact reporter Rhea Turner on 01283 245047 or email rhea.turner@burtonmail.co.uk

And over the next few weeks we will bringing you stories of everyone who donates.

Editor Emma Turton calls for readers to back Feed Our Families

"After the incredible success of last year's Feed Our Families appeal it was a no-brainer that the Burton Mail would launch and run it again for 2017.

"We know finances are still tight for a lot of our readers, so we are not asking people for money or to dig too deep for the appeal; instead we are asking our readers to buy an extra tin or packet of food when they do their weekly shopping and drop it in to one of the collection points.

"We want to make sure the food banks in Burton and South Derbyshire have plenty of produce this Christmas, ready to be handed out to the people in our community who really need it.

"The response last year was phenomenal. The charities which shared the donations were overwhelmed with the generosity of our readers; we hope to match or beat last year when more than 15,000 items were donated.

"Already we have several schools, supermarkets and major employers in Burton and South Derbyshire on board.

"They have offered to set up donation boxes or run a donation day to boost the campaign.

"It really is fantastic to see, yet no surprise. I want to thank, in advance, every single reader who donates to make sure the most needy in our communities have food in their cupboards this Christmas."