GroceryAid has spent a record £4.3m on welfare support during the last 12 months, according to the charity’s end of year results.

The charity for the grocery industry spent heavily on welfare, extending to financial assistance through GroceryAid’s Helpline, which was used by 7,800 people in the last year, along with one-off grants and emergency payments to assist during difficult periods.

The fund also supported the ‘carers programme’, currently in its second year, which continues to offer financial and emotional support to around 580 people by assisting almost one fifth to juggle caring responsibilities and employment.

Gillian Barker, GroceryAid director general, said: “I am delighted to report that another great year of industry support has enabled GroceryAid to help even more current and former colleagues in need. We have for the first time in our history helped more than 11,000 grocery colleagues. However, the need for our support has never been greater and we are very thankful that our industry continues to stand behind our work.

“This fantastic welfare assistance is only possible due to the ongoing excellent support of our industry that helped us raise a record-breaking £4,694,648 in 2015/16. Our sincere thanks go to the regional branches who had a particularly strong year and raised a record £1.16m in funds, which only further emphasises the hugely important role these volunteers play in the success of the charity.”

The high profile fundraising activities for GroceryAid included the Diamond Ball, which raised a record £292,353, the Sporting Heroes Luncheon (£323,334) and the inaugural Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge (£30,255).