Telford food banks to get a share of £90,000 fund

Food banks are to receive a share of £90,000 from Telford & Wrekin Council to help cope with unprecedented demand for their services.

Volunteers at Newport food bank
Volunteers at Newport food bank

Telford Crisis Support and Telford and Wrekin Interfaith Council have already received support for delivering seven-day a week food provision across the borough and catering for cultural needs.

Newport Food Bank and Dawley Christian Centre are among those also set to benefit from a share of funding.

Matt Partridge, Newport Food Bank's manager, welcomed the support which he says will be crucial as he anticipates things 'getting worse' for families following a Government u-turn on energy.

Feed a Family:

New Chancellor Jeremy Hunt dramatically scaled back support for household energy bills this week. He said the energy price guarantee – which had been due to cap prices for two years – will end in April after which time the Government will look to target help for those most in need.

Mr Partridge said: "As a food bank we will be very grateful to receive extra funding. It will help us to provide extra food to help our clients at this challenging time and we thank Telford & Wrekin Council for their support.

"He have been fortunate to receive a lot of help from the community, with schools and churches bring us donations as a result of Harvest Festival. Lots of hard work is now going on to sort donations for distribution."

He added: "We are still very busy and its only going to get worse with the energy situation and the fact costs are now only being frozen until April. We will wait to see how things pan out as a result of that."

Councillor Paul Watling, Telford & Wrekin cabinet member for stronger and safer communities, said: “As part of the council’s support around the cost of living crisis, we are providing additional funding to organisations that provide free food parcels.

“It is devastating that so many people in our borough are struggling to afford the basics. As a co-operative council we are committed to funding charitable organisations but they still need your help with donations and every pound will benefit someone in Telford & Wrekin.”

Telford and Wrekin Interfaith Council provides food parcels after 5pm during the week and at weekends.

Mayor of Telford and Wrekin, Raj Mehta, is chair of the charity and said: “If everyone could donate even one tin of beans from their food shop it will make a huge difference to people living in their community.”

Telford Crisis Support, which also runs a toddler and baby bank and school uniform project, said recently the number of people asking for help was up by more than a third on 2021 and many were those in work but still unable to make ends meet.

Operations manager Simon Lellow said: “It’s heart-breaking the calls we are getting and often our staff come off the phone in tears.

“This is no longer a cost of living crisis, it’s a cost of subsistence crisis and it’s unprecedented. People have been cutting back for some time – buying less, going for the cheapest option, batch cooking – and they simply cannot cut back anymore.

“My plea is for people to come together like they did during Covid and help their neighbours. Every food donation will benefit someone in their community. But we are so much more than a food bank and we also urgently need cash donations.”

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