A charity with shops in Bordon, Liphook, Grayshott and Haslemere has distributed a record £24,290 worth of supermarket vouchers to local families in need of financial support this Christmas.

The amount gifted by The Tantum Trust this year far exceeds that of any other year as a growing number of families in the area find it impossible to make ends meet.

The families are nominated by local schools, churches, Citizens Advice and other organisations which are in the best position to know which families are struggling.

The Tantum Trust is truly a local affair – its funds come primarily from profits made in its four shops in Bordon, Liphook, Grayshott and Haslemere, and all the grants made are to local families.

Often these families are in desperate circumstances and are requesting a few hundred pounds to cover items such as a new cooker or short-term financial assistance.

They find that there’s nothing to spare in their family budget when things go wrong and that’s when The Tantum Trust steps in to support.

“The charity is like an ever-spinning circle where donations of goods are made to the shops, these are then purchased and those in need, within our defined area, receive support grants from the profits,” said a Tantum Trust spokesman.

“The donors, shoppers and grant recipients are all local so there are hardly any ‘miles’ used in the transfer of goods to grants.

“This is circular economics at its best – those in a position to help can donate knowing profits go to their neighbours in need. The Tantum Trust makes it all happen.

“The circle can keep turning only thanks to the donations made, to our loyal customers and to the dedicated volunteers and workforce, who pride themselves on delivering an enjoyable retail experience.”

In recent months the charity has seen an increase in the number of customers in the shops, which it believes is possibly because the rising cost of living is forcing people to shop in this way and possibly because a growing number accept that re-purposed goods are far better for the environment

But it has also seen a large increase in the number of grant requests and so needs donations of really good quality items, or financial contributions, and a steady stream of customers to buy the stock. It also needs more enthusiastic and willing volunteers.

The charity has been running in this way for 30 years and has every intention of carrying on for another 30. It would love to hear from anyone interested in getting involved. Visit www.thetantumtrust.co.uk for details.