Awards Spotlight - Allan Boot, Black Country Foodbank
Introducing Allan Boot from Black Country Foodbank, Inspirational Individuals award winner.
Why do you love what you do?
I have been a Christian for nearly 40 years, and about 25 years ago, these scriptures in the Bible transformed the way I look at people and how to serve God in a better way:
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, The Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question. "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" Jesus replied "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all you soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment and the second is like it: 'Love your neighbour as yourself'. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments"
I have been working for Walsall Community Church (the church I attend) since 2002 and we have a saying that "People are Important" and have worked on a number of projects, where I have been working with people who have been in need of help for many different reasons. Whether it has been benefiting advice, debt advice, foodbank support or just moving furniture - I feel that I have been loving my neighbour as Jesus had commanded.
I just want to see the best for people and if I can help them move forward in their life, I believe that they have been helped by Jesus.
What is your proudest moment from the work you’ve done in your community?
A difficult one to answer I don't like to shout out about things. I like to feel that I am part of a large team of people from different organisations and churches and that if I or we have helped change the life of one person in a positive way, for me that is a proud moment.
The Awards are about bringing people together, can you tell us about some of the great things that are happening to bring people together in your sector/community/Walsall?
I have seen a team of people come together, from different backgrounds and set up, with the support of the Black Country Foodbank, a new foodbank operating out of a community centre.
This in itself is a fantastic statement as it is something that was led by the community and for the community and has had a big impact on people’s lives especially through the current crisis.
What is your vision for Walsall in the next 5 years, especially within your sector? What would need to happen and what support would be needed to make that a reality?
I would love to see people being free from poverty, debt and insecurity. For people to be able to stand proud and hold their hands out to help other people who have been in difficult situations and to help move them into a better place.
What are you most looking forward to doing post-Covid?
To be able to hug my eldest daughter! She lives in Birmingham and she is currently (as I write this) 22 weeks pregnant and since she told us she was pregnant we have only seen her twice - but we have abided by the rules and kept a social distance, and that has been difficult not to give her a hug.