Select Page

Helping this harvest is so easy

We’ll send you what you need to organise a food/fundraising collection.


Just fill out the form below

Donate to help us feed hungry people during Harvest Festival, and throughout the year.

This Harvest Festival is going to be particularly difficult for millions of families. In October, people’s energy bills will increase by over £1,600 a year, and millions of households will not be able to afford food.

City Harvest wants to be there for every person that need us. Your support can have a direct impact on London’s most vulnerable people.

“What we are facing right now is a financial emergency that risks lives… I cannot tell you how dangerous what is coming is going to be for people’s mental health, for their livelihoods and for their health” – Martin Lewis (Money Saving Expert)

What is Harvest Festival?

Harvest Festival was an initiative created by the CofE to reconnect people to where their food comes from. Celebrating the value of food, those who produce it and donating surplus produce to help those in need.  By joining the City Harvest Festival you can help London’s most vulnerable receive the food they need.  We are asking supporters to collect food or collect money, or collect food and money to help City Harvest’s work.

City Harvest Festival runs throughout October, for a day, a week, or the whole month if you prefer!  You can organise your own food and fundraising collections and just send us the proceeds, or click below for how we can work with you at your company, your school or your faith group to celebrate the true spirit of Harvest.

When is Harvest Festival?

This year (2023), Harvest Festival is on Sunday 1st of October & by organising a food or fundraising collection, you can help to make a real difference in the fight against hunger in London.

Simply fill out the form below and we will support you with information and collection details.

Organising a food & fundraising collection in your workplace is a really simple way of supporting and contributing to City Harvest Festival.

Harvest Festival runs for the whole month of October. At your convenience you can arrange a collection for a day, a week, or the whole month.

How It Works
Set up a table in an area of high footfall and simply ask your teams to leave their food donation, or tap to donate. Items with a long shelf life such as pasta, rice, cereals, tins and jars are all perfect for donating to us.

We can provide collection tins or a QR code for staff and visitors to contribute.  To really make a splash get in touch about a personalised banner proclaiming your support for City Harvest and how people can help.

What you’ll need
We can provide posters and banners to advertise your collection, as well as to display at your collection area. If in London, we can arrange delivery of tote bins for you to gather the food, ready for us to collect.

At the end of your food collection, just get in touch. If you’re in the London area, we’ll arrange a collection for you in one of our vans. If you’re outside of London, we’d kindly ask you to arrange delivery into our warehouse directly. Please do get in touch with us though as we’re always happy to discuss the possibility of arranging a collection if we can. Obviously, you’d also be more than welcome to deliver yourself and see our warehouse in action!

If you’d like further information, please complete the form above.

Collect food and fundraise for us at school this Harvest Festival to help tackle food poverty in London. 

We can support your school Harvest Festival activity with:

  • assembly packs
  • videos
  • fundraising ideas

Get in touch using the contact form above to arrange a food donation collection or to discuss fundraising ideas.

We’re so grateful to the many churches, synagogues, mosques and other faith-based groups that have collected food and donations for City Harvest’s work.  

If you would like to organise a food or fundraising collection, we can help you with:

  • information about what food we need most and how to organise a collection
  • information about City Harvest and the impact we have to share with your congregation

Please contact us using the form above.

Harvest Festival: King's College School Wimbledon collect food donations for food poverty charity City Harvest

Collect food and fundraise for us at school this Harvest Festival to help tackle food poverty in London. 

We’re so grateful to the many churches, synagogues, mosques and other faith-based groups that have collected food and donations for City Harvest’s work. 

Harvest Festival FAQs

What is Harvest Festival?

Harvest Festival is a traditional event celebrating the crops and food grown on the land. It is the time of year that the crops are harvested and is traditionally celebrated on the Sunday nearest to the harvest moon. The harvest moon is the full Moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox, which is often towards the end of September. In the past the festival would be held as soon as the harvest had been completed. When the final cartload returns proudly to the farm. At this point a Harvest Supper, also known as the ‘Harvest Home’, would take place.

What connection does City Harvest have with Harvest Festival?

Harvest Festival is a significant time of year for City Harvest. As London’s first food redistribution charity we aim to address food waste and food poverty in the capital. City Harvest puts surplus food to good use in a sustainable way delivering over 1 million meals a month to over 350+ charities including; children’s programmes, food banks, homelessness projects, refuges for women fleeing domestic violence and families fleeing war-torn countries, and local groups across London welcoming the elderly and isolated. Local schools, churches, individuals and community groups make a particular effort to support us at this time.

What to give for Harvest Festival?

People traditionally collect food or donate money to us at this time to help us continue our mission, providing food to some of London’s most vulnerable people.

Harvest Festival Ideas for Schools and Churches

There are many ways that you can help. Some of the things that people have done in the past include:
  • Holding a Barn Dance or School Disco to raise money
  • Selling produce grown on allotments at local fetes and donating the proceeds
  • Collections held at Churches and Schools
  • Talks and assemblies about City Harvest
  • Thanksgiving Services
  • Fancy dress and non uniform days
  • Food related quiz and activities
  • Food and money collections
  • Extravagant community feasts
  • Cakes sales
If you would like to support us during the Harvest Festival then please let us know via the contact form on this page. We would love to hear about what you have planned and can support you if needed.

Can we collect food for City Harvest?

Yes! City Harvest collects food donations from schools and churches but not from individuals’ homes. We are only able to collect substantial amounts of certain foods, due to the cost of fuel and collection, so please contact us in advance about your collection and to arrange pick up. The types of food we can collect: Ambient Food (food that has long life such as tins, pasta, rice, cereal etc) Must be in date Must be unopened and in original packaging.

How can we give money?

Financial support can be made to us via the donation form on this page. Alternatively you can send us a cheque made payable to City Harvest. Financial support helps us to continue providing food throughout the year, enabling us to plan and provide a consistent level of service to the people that need us the most.

Can we support City Harvest in any other way?

We have volunteering opportunities for individuals and community groups at our warehouses in Acton and Spitalfields Market. You can read more about them by clicking the link.

How long does Harvest Festival last?

The festivities, historically, could last many days but would traditionally be concluded by St Michael’s Mass on the 29th September, the signifier for the end of harvest. The festivities would include extravagant meals, singing, dancing, drinking games, and much ale.

Is Harvest Festival a religious festival?

The festival derives from ancient times but has been adopted by many religious groups with a focus on food, gratitude, and charity – which is why schools across the UK hold events to help people in need.

Whilst not originally Christian, Harvest Festival is celebrated by many religious groups including Christians. Food collection festivals have been celebrated since ancient times. Whilst they are not part of the traditional church year, many churches now celebrate harvest in the autumn.

Historically for some the Harvest used to be celebrated on 1st August and was called Lammas, meaning ‘loaf Mass’. Farmers made loaves of bread and gave them to their local churches where they were used as the communion bread during a special thanksgiving service. In the Jewish religion, the Harvest Festival is called Sukkot or ‘Feast of Ingathering’ or ‘the ‘Feast of Tabernacles’. It is celebrated at the end of the year, after Rosh Hoshanah and is the third of the great Annual Festivals. You can find out more about City Harvest and our work here.