Foodbank's thanks to community after feeding 1500 children
- Credit: Noah Vickers
About 1500 children were among the 4000 people fed by the mid-Norfolk Foodbank over the past year, as the pandemic has put the service under unprecedented pressure.
To help it meet the demand, the foodbank received a record 62.8 tonnes of donations in the year to March 1 2021 – compared to 44 tonnes in the previous year.
Almost 50 tonnes of staple foods, toiletries and other donated household goods were handed out to single people, couples and families from distribution centres at Dereham, Swaffham and Fakenham.
Remaining stocks are being maintained in anticipation of another busy year, as hundreds of families grapple with redundancy and low incomes, as well as the arrival of home heating bills after the cold winter.
“Little did we think this time last year that we would be called upon to help so many people through such a traumatic time,” said foodbank chairman Dave Pearson.
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“We have provided 110,000 meals, but the help we’ve been able to offer hasn’t ended there,” he added.
“A feature of the past year has been the number of other organisations helping people with food donations, and we were able to supply some of these with food equivalent to a further 14,500 meals.
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“Donations in cash and kind have flowed in from 140 donor organisations, as well as the countless people who have dropped an item or two into in-store donation boxes during their weekly shop.
“Every single donation, large or small, has meant something to someone in need, so to all those who have given, we say thank you.”
The foodbank continues to urge those facing hardship to make as much use of the service as they need.
“Even if you’re struggling to balance the budget for a just a week or two because of an unexpected fuel or car bill or a family crisis, we can lend a helping hand,” said Mr Pearson.
The Mid-Norfolk Foodbank’s distribution centres are based at Dereham’s Wellspring Church; Swaffham Baptist Church; and Fakenham Salvation Army centre.
People wanting to use the foodbank can access the service through various agencies, including Citizens Advice and Breckland Council.
If you wish to donate, visit https://midnorfolk.foodbank.org.uk to find out what goods are currently most needed.