SOCIAL media has played a vital role in the Runcorn community coming together to help a family in need.

Buy, Swap, Sell, a Facebook group which caters to residents in the Runcorn area, allows people to sell or donate items they no longer need and hundreds of people pulled together when a woman asked for help.

Maggie Fowler created the group about 10 years ago and now runs it with help from three admins.

She said: "We are more of a community page.

"It's a group of about 41,000 people.

"One of the young ladies on our page asked for help and wanted guiding in the right direction.

"Instead, hundreds of people on the page donated cash and food to help her."

Volunteers collected 12 bags of food, nappies and cleaning items, along with £140 in cash to pay for gas and electricity.

Maggie said the act of generosity helped to start another Facebook group which acts as a virtual foodbank from community donations and offers advice and guidance.

She said: "Out of it came Free Food in Runcorn.

"It means that if people ask for help like that young lady, we can give it to them through that page."

Any donations not passed on to individuals will go to other organisations, elderly people and struggling families.