The Lee Rigby Foundation, set up by Lee’s family after he was murdered in 2013, is unable to carry out its usual charitable work during lockdown so the Rigbys are helping vulnerable neighbours instead.
The family, who live in Cheadle, are delivering emergency food parcels, collecting prescriptions and dropping off home cooked meals for people in need.
Lee’s mum, Lyn, does a weekly shop for around 15 people and receives food donations which she distributes out to families.
The 53-year-old said: “With pubs being closed and events cancelled, the foundation has lost thousands already this year. We are so used to helping people and we just couldn’t do that when lockdown began.
“But then Cheadle Councillor Jamie Evans set up a volunteer page on Facebook and we got involved in that. Now we are delivering shopping, medication and getting involved with the local foodbank.
“We received a big donation from Morrisons in Cheadle which took over my house. I was able to then knock on doors and see what people were in need of. Everyone in Cheadle has been very generous and I’d like to thank them for all of their support.”
Lyn’s husband Ian, 61, and daughter Amy, 15, are both helping out where they can too.
Lyn said: “We’ve all been getting involved. My 15-year-old daughter Amy loves helping out at the weekends. I’m so proud of her.
“There’s a lot of elderly people in our community and they really appreciate our help. We delivered more than 60 care packs last weekend and also included compliment slips so people could get in touch. People were calling and crying, saying that until now no one had thought about them.”
Local restaurant The New Olive Tree was also keen to help Lyn and her fellow volunteers by providing free hot meals to be distributed to the vulnerable.
“Martin and Louise from The New Olive Tree made Sunday lunches and cakes for my regulars who I always do shopping for. It broke my heart when I delivered the meals because they really appreciated it, and a lot of them hadn’t had a proper meal in days.
“It’s so rewarding to be able to continue to help people while the foundation is still on hold.”
The family are looking forward to things getting back to normal so their work with the Lee Rigby Foundation can get back on track.
Lyn said: “Our troops are in need of hand and foot cream so I put out an appeal for that and my phone has just been going off all the time. People really want to help.
“I’m hoping to create shoebox care packs for the troops, just like I did with Lee. They would include things like tea and coffee, a mixture of essentials and comforts. “
The Lee Rigby Foundation is currently trying to raise money to buy static caravans around the country, to be used by families who have lost a loved one in military service or for veterans and their families who would benefit from a holiday.
You can find out more about the Lee Rigby Foundation here.
Now Lyn, Ian and Amy Rigby have now been nominated for an Our Heroes Award in the People First category by Councillor Jamie Evans, who says that the family have been ‘working tirelessly’ delivering food parcels and prescriptions to people in need during these uncertain times.
Readers who want to make a nomination for the Our Heroes Awards should email firstname.lastname@example.org with Our Heroes in the subject box.