Words by Smiley Team
Louise Bennet, a mother to two former Royal Marines, is preparing to send her 250,000th baked item overseas to their colleagues.
When her eldest son George was in the military during the Iraq war, she started sending baked goods over to him. When she found out some members of his troop never got packages from home, she started sending baked goods addressed to the whole troop – so that everyone would get something.
But her work hasn’t stopped just because her sons are no longer active in the military.
“The boxes go to Iraq still, to the Ministry of Defence Hospital Unit at Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, and also to the Royal Marines at Haslar Naval Service Recovery Centre,” she said.
“And, in a few weeks, I will be dispatching my 250,000th cake, bun, or cookie. They’ve been called my Buns of Mass Production. It was never meant to be a marathon bake but it’s just continued.”
As well as supporting the troops directly, Louise is preparing to support the Help for Heroes charity at her local Tesco store in Tenbury Wells. This is as part of the Tesco National Collection Weekend on 25-26 June, which happens to coincide with Armed Forces Day.
“Our service personnel deserve to be looked after,” said Louise, of her dedication to Help for Heroes. “They are prepared to put their lives on the line for their countrymen and women and, surely, the least we can do is give what we can – both in terms of money and time – to ensure they receive the support they need.”
Help for Heroes is a charity dedicated to assisting veterans, as well as serving personnel, by providing physical, psychological, financial and welfare support. Almost 90% of financial support for Help for Heroes comes from donations through the generosity of the UK public, so fundraising opportunities are key.
VOLUNTEER: Help for Heroes are still actively looking for volunteers to help support them for the National Collection Weekend, which you can apply to do on their website.
DONATE: You can donate to Help for Heroes as a standard single donation, or you can donate in memory of someone who served.
SUPPORT: You can find a number of charities which help Army personnel on the British Army website.