Barrow Foodbank is asking local people to check what donations are most needed in the area, as they prepare for a busy summer with increased need during the school holidays.
In previous years, the rise in the number of families struggling to stretch their money to cover the summer break has left Barrow Foodbank’s stocks running low for certain items. Now the charity has launched an urgent appeal for food donations ahead of the holidays this year to ensure they can continue to offer emergency help in the community to people in crisis.
In the last financial year, the food bank, which is part of the Trussell Trust’s network, provided 8,100 three-day emergency food supplies to people in need. Of these, 3,112 went to children.
While donations are vital for helping families during the coming weeks, the Barrow Foodbank has stressed food banks are not a long-term solution, and more must be done to ensure people have enough money for essentials like food. The charity is now backing calls by the Trussell Trust for the Government to tackle delays and gaps in benefits, which affect families’ ability to afford essentials, as a first priority. This includes ending the five week way for a first Universal Credit payment, a key driver of increasing need at food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network. More locally, the food bank is urging local families to seek help if they are struggling to afford food this summer, and asks local people able to donate to support their work in the community. Ann Mills, Barrow Foodbank Manager, explains:
“No one in Barrow, Millom or Ulverston should need a food bank’s help and we want to see an end to local people needing emergency food at all. But more and more people are finding that their income simply won’t stretch to meet the extra pressure of missing free school meals or paying for extra childcare during the holidays.
We know it doesn’t have to be like this. We’re determined to work alongside other food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network to bring about long-term change to end hunger not only during the holidays, but at any time of year.
While we work in the long-term to tackle the reasons why people don’t have enough money, help is here in Barrow, Millom and Ulverston. This summer Churches Together in Barrow are running brunch clubs to provide fun activities and a meal to local families finding the school holidays hard. The free club offers children and parents a chance to relax, have some fun and make new friends – it’s all about helping each other and recognizing that nobody in our community should feel alone. Barrow Foodbank will be supporting these clubs (see attached image for more information).
We’re able to offer this crucial support to local people because of the community’s help – we rely on local donations to run the food bank. Any donations of our most-needed items will be invaluable this summer.”
The food bank is most in need of the following items:
• Tinned fruit
• Tinned Fish
• Instant mash
• Sponge puddings
• Tinned Tomatoes