With the current cost-of-living crisis showing no signs of ending, one church group has gone out into the local community to provide practical support for the elderly and vulnerable in the congregations connected to their organisation.
First Portadown Boys’ Brigade Old Boys’ Association have recently delivered over 40 hampers to senior and needy members of Thomas Street, Edenderry Memorial and Epworth Methodist Churches.
Steven Wright, Chairman of the Association, explained: “At one of our committee meetings towards the end of 2022, we were thinking of doing something for those in the community who are experiencing hardships and difficulties, especially after Christmas when any festive gifts and presents to those in need had already gone out.
“Hot meals were discussed, but the best solution we agreed on were the hampers,” he explained.
With the co-operation of the ministers and officials from the three churches, a list was drawn up and the task of purchasing and assembling the boxes, obtaining labels and getting the necessary provisions began.
The Association made contact with Fruitfield SuperValu, Richhill, and the staff packed the provisions in time for delivery on February 17, 18 and 20.
Steven says that it was a “real team effort” between members of the Old Boys’ Association and the staff at Fruitfield to get the hampers out, adding that the Association wish to thank the manager of Fruitfield, Philip Woods, and the staff at the store, along with the Association members who acted as drivers, delivery personnel and label printers.
The hampers were well received by the recipients, who thanked the Association for their kindness.
The 1st Portadown BB Old Boys’ Association, which was formed on February 26, 1939, is open to all past and present officers and boys of the 1st, 6th & 7th Portadown Companies of the Boys’ Brigade, who have reached 17 years of age.
On Sunday, February 26, the Association held their Annual Service in Thomas Street Methodist Church, which was attended by Lord Mayor Councillor Paul Greenfield.
The Old Boys’ Association’s next Bible Class takes place on Sunday, March 12 at 3pm in Thomas Street Methodist Church (Minor Hall), when the speakers will be former Irish international cricketer, Kyle McCallan MBE and Irish League footballer, Jonah Mitchell.