A group of 13 National Citizen Service (NCS) graduates from Exeter will this week (Nov 26) see their simple idea to increase donations to food banks rolled out to Sainsbury’s stores nationwide.

The teenagers came up with the idea this summer after speaking to their local food bank during the social action phase of the national youth programme for 16 and 17-year-olds.

The group learned that shoppers often didn’t know they could donate in supermarkets or were donating the same items, making it difficult for the food bank to offer enough variety.

To combat the problem, the NCS grads came up with a simple, ingenious idea – to put a sticker next to items most needed by food banks to encourage people to donate.

The manager of their local Sainsbury’s agreed to trial the labels, which in two weeks led to a 300% increase in donations to the Exeter food bank.

They were then invited to head office of Britain’s second biggest supermarket where they worked alongside Sainsbury’s specialist teams to develop the stickers in preparation for national roll out across all their stores.

The labels will appear alongside the top 15 priority food bank items all year round and will be a driver in Sainsbury’s and Argos’ festive food and toy donation drive: ‘Help Brighten a Million Christmases’.

- Ends -