SPAR, EUROSPAR, ViVO and ViVOXTRA stores in Northern Ireland are thanking local shoppers for their generosity as the total fundraising amount for the annual Tearfund appeal has been announced.

In total, £616,340 was raised, the highest amount to date. The money will go towards multiple Tearfund projects around the world helping communities and individuals who are living in poverty.

The money was raised through the ‘Make Dreams a Reality this Christmas’ appeal which ran from 1st November 2023 until 31st January 2024. The appeal was supported by Leah McCourt, Bellator MMA No.1 featherweight contender, who said she was delighted to support the appeal, “As a mother, when I hear about parents whose dreams are to feed their children or keep their families safe, I feel compelled to act”.

Chris Thompson, Tearfund’s Director in Northern Ireland, commented, “I wish to extend a massive thank you to all store staff and their shoppers for their generosity and support. This is an incredible amount of money which will change so many lives in the most vulnerable countries, where it is needed most.

“The total of £616,340 could, for example, train 32,438 people, who live in areas where climate change is a threat to safety or livelihood, in climate-smart farming techniques, so there is no going back to extreme poverty.

“This is the eleventh partnership appeal with SPAR, EUROSPAR, ViVO and ViVOXTRA and their donations over the years have helped thousands of people living in extreme poverty around the world.”

Bronagh Luke from SPAR NI, added, “I’d like to thank our shoppers for their astounding support of this important appeal, every penny is appreciated.

“The support we’ve had for these appeals over the years is amazing and with the help of our shoppers the money we have raised this year will help change the lives of thousands of people.

“I have experienced first-hand the incredible difference that donations like this make, in rebuilding lives for people in the most extreme conditions, so I know this will go such a long way for so many.”