Community champion Tracey wins industry award

Tracey Harriott has been named as a Heinz Food Hero for her outstanding work in the community.

Based at the NEC in Birmingham, Tracey, who works for the company’s catering provider, Amadeus, was selected as the winner from a selection of finalists in the ‘Most Heroic Individual’ category at The Heinz Food Heroes Awards.

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The awards celebrate those working in the food world who have gone the extra mile to make life better for their community.

Day-to-day, Tracey can be found at one of the event centre’s Starbucks outlets, all of which are run by Amadeus staff, but it’s her work outside the normal nine-to-five which took the eye of the judges.

Tracey started her outreach work by delivering leftover food from events at the NEC to some of the most vulnerable in society, before bringing together a network of willing colleagues and local businesses to donate and deliver clothes, bedding and furniture too. Tracey then distributes these to several worthy charities across Birmingham including Outreach Angels, YoungStars Community Club, St Basils and Heartlands Hostel.  

As well as her award, Tracey will also receive a mentoring programme, leading to a £5,000 bursary to further support her charitable efforts.

On the award, Tracey said: “It’s amazing to be recognised by Heinz as one of their Food Heroes. It’s naturally been a challenging year for everyone, and I felt it was important to support my local community in any way possible. I’m also thrilled to receive news of the £5,000 bursary, which I hope will help improve many more lives in and around Birmingham.”

Luke McLean from YoungStars Community Club said: “Tracey’s donations have enabled us to continue our food bank, run cooking sessions, clothe young people and more – she’s an asset to our community. Over the COVID period, YoungStars hasn’t been open but that hasn’t stopped Tracey. She’s been running raffles to help raise money for the Club, which has allowed us to buy a bike to deliver food parcels all over the community and helped to pay for a family’s bills when both parents were made redundant due to the current climate.”

Kevin Watson, Managing Director at Amadeus, said: “It’s testament to Tracey’s hard work and dedication that she has been named as a Heinz Food Hero. The award is richly deserved and I’m glad the judges recognised how she goes that extra mile in the community and helps those that need it most.”