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Foodbanks

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Suitable for: Any or All Locations
Estimated costs: Varies.
Suggested frequency: Daily
Hosted by: Your church
Activity: Food
Author: TrussellTrust
Published: 11/11/2015

Description

13 million people live below the poverty line in the UK. Every day, people in the UK go hungry for reasons ranging from redundancy to receiving an unexpected bill on a low income. Trussell Trust foodbanks provide a minimum of three days emergency food, and support to people experiencing crisis in the UK.

Rising food and fuel prices, static incomes, underemployment and changes to benefits are some of the reasons why increasing numbers are being referred to foodbanks for emergency food. The Trussell Trust partners with churches and communities to open new foodbanks nationwide. With over 420 foodbanks currently launched, our goal is for every town to have one.

Foodbanks help prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems. A simple box of food makes a big difference. All food is donated by the public and sorted by volunteers. Frontline care professionals, such as doctors and social workers, identify people in crisis and issue a food voucher. Clients receive three days of nutritionally balanced, non-perishable food in exchange for their food voucher. Foodbanks also make time to chat and to signpost clients to other helpful services.

When temperatures plummet in winter, foodbank clients across the UK are often forced to choose between eating and heating. For Anne-Marie and Danny, 22, a delay in benefits hit at the same time as Danny was off work with flu. He received no sick pay and finances got so tight that they were faced with eviction as well as having no money for food. The couple and their 18-month-old daughter, Tia, were living and sleeping in one room to reduce heating bills. They resorted to borrowing a tin of soup from their neighbours to stop little Tia going hungry. When the foodbank delivered an emergency foodbox to the delighted family there was ice on the inside of their windows.

Rationale

Today a number of people across the UK are struggling to feed themselves and their families. Redundancy, illness, benefit delay, domestic violence, debt, family breakdown all have an impact. Foodbank exists to eradicate food poverty, their desire is to no longer need to operate as society changes to ensure that the hungry are fed.

Outcome

In 2014-15, foodbanks fed 1,084,604 people nationwide. Of those helped, 396,997 were children.

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