Waltham Forest Echo

Waltham Forest Echo

Chingford woman given royal medal for setting up food bank

Tracey set up a new food bank after noticing there was little support in the north of the borough

Hero for Chingford woman given royal medal for setting up food bank
Tracey Rogers is on the New Year's Honours list for her volunteering during Covid (credit: Scouts)
By Victoria Munro 01 January 2022

A Chingford woman has been awarded a British Empire Medal after setting up a food bank to help those isolating during lockdown.A Chingford woman has been awarded a British Empire Medal after setting up a food bank to help those isolating during lockdown.

Scout volunteer Tracey Rogers set up Highams Park Food Aid, now known as the Hub, after noticing how little support there was in the north of the borough.Scout volunteer Tracey Rogers set up Highams Park Food Aid, now known as the Hub, after noticing how little support there was in the north of the borough.

A team of 90 volunteers packed and delivered more than 60,000 meals from their base in the local scout hall during the height of the pandemic.A team of 90 volunteers packed and delivered more than 60,000 meals from their base in the local scout hall during the height of the pandemic.

The food bank is still operating thanks to a fundraiser that netted £100,000 and supports more than 200 families, as well as providing a free community cafe. The food bank is still operating thanks to a fundraiser that netted £100,000 and supports more than 200 families, as well as providing a free community cafe. 

Tracey Rogers said receiving the award was “a complete surprise”, adding that The Hub would have been impossible without “incredible and immediate support” from the Scouts, All Saints Church in Chingford, the Highams Park Community group and other local volunteers.Tracey Rogers said receiving the award was “a complete surprise”, adding that The Hub would have been impossible without “incredible and immediate support” from the Scouts, All Saints Church in Chingford, the Highams Park Community group and other local volunteers.

She said: “The Hub is a real team effort by a large group of dedicated people, many of whom have been with us for over 18 months now. As far as I am concerned this award is for every one of them and not just for me.She said: “The Hub is a real team effort by a large group of dedicated people, many of whom have been with us for over 18 months now. As far as I am concerned this award is for every one of them and not just for me.

“I am delighted that we have been able to continue the project and support those in food poverty across our local area and provide a venue for the community to come back together.”    “I am delighted that we have been able to continue the project and support those in food poverty across our local area and provide a venue for the community to come back together.”    

Co-organiser and Scout commissioner Peter Rogers said the Scouts were “absolutely delighted for Tracey”, a volunteer with them for more than 30 years.Co-organiser and Scout commissioner Peter Rogers said the Scouts were “absolutely delighted for Tracey”, a volunteer with them for more than 30 years.

He added: “To get this recognition for going the extra mile is truly amazing and well deserved.”He added: “To get this recognition for going the extra mile is truly amazing and well deserved.”