Community responds generously to support lorry drivers
published on 31 Dec 2020
Almost £19,000 has been donated to a JustGiving page set up by the South East Division of The Salvation Army as volunteers rallied to support lorry drivers stranded in Kent before Christmas.
The Salvation Army’s incident response team was asked by Kent County Council to support the police and other emergency services as part of Operation Stack, where freight vehicles are parked along the motorway because of delays at the channel ports or Eurotunnel.
Major Mark Herbert Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army’s South East Division Said:
“The response from the public over the past week has been incredible. Every time I looked at the JustGiving page, it had gone up again. Today it is at almost £19,000. That is simply amazing and I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has donated.
“We have also been overwhelmed by support from businesses across London and the south east who donated surplus food and supplies which were distributed to lorry drivers and also across our food banks.
“This money will help us continue to swiftly bring support to the emergency services and communities in their hour of need. Our response vehicles often attend large fires or major incidents where people are left without shelter and food.”
Salvation Army volunteers prepared 2,500 lunch bags containing a sandwich, crisps, snack bar, piece of fruit and a drink which were distributed to lorry drivers stuck on the M20 motorway. Money donated to the regional appeal will be used to restock emergency supplies so the team of volunteers are ready to respond when they are next needed.
Our South East vehicle is one of The Salvation Army’s busiest incident response vans in the UK. Volunteers have previously responded to flooding in the village of Yalding over Christmas a few years ago, the Sheppey Bridge crash involving over 150 vehicles, past call outs to support Operation Stack on the M20 as well as many occasions supporting Search and Rescue operations in the area.
Whilst The Salvation Army has now been stood down from the incident in Kent, our incident response teams in the south east and elsewhere across the UK, remain on standby ready to offer support to the emergency services.
The Salvation Army has a long history of supporting communities in times of need.
The dedication of Salvation Army volunteers and officers in responding to emergencies is one of our assets. They are able to respond any time of the day or night to support the frontline work of our emergency services.
Read more about our emergency response service response here