More than 5,000 food bank supplies provided to people across Morecambe Bay in last six months
New figures released by Morecambe Bay Foodbank reveal 5,264 emergency food supplies were provided to people between April and September - 1,910 of them to children.
The figures are an 64.4 per cent increase on the same period in 2019, and the food bank believes the increase in local people needing its support is due to pressures from the pandemic, the £20 cut to Universal Credit and increasing energy bills.
The food bank is part of the Trussell Trust network, which on average provided more than 5,100 emergency food supplies to people across the UK every day between April and September.
Almost 2,000 of these were provided for children. It’s an 11 per cent increase compared to the same period in 2019 and over the last five years there’s been a 74 per cent increase.
The food bank warns families face an even tougher winter after £20 per week was cut from Universal Credit payments last month. This is on top of rising fuel costs this winter and soaring inflation.
Dusty Thomas, trustee of Morecambe Bay Foodbank, said: “It’s not right that people in our community are needing a charity’s help to put food on the table. Everyone should be able to afford the essentials. And we know our figures are just the tip of the iceberg as different community organisations, independent food banks and local authorities have also been working during the pandemic to support our community.
“We’re always blown away by the amount of support and generosity local people show in supporting our work – our vital work has only been possible because of that incredible support. Thank you so much.
“While our help continues to be needed, we’re dedicated to ensuring that people without enough money for food are able to access emergency support. Because we don’t think it’s right that any of us are forced to turn to any charity for emergency food.
"That’s why we’re proud to be working alongside other food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network to push for the long-term changes we need to reach a future where everyone has enough money for the essentials.”
December is often the food bank’s busiest month, so the charity is asking people who are considering supporting their work to donate food via the charity’s local donation points across the district, or to make a regular monthly donation to support the work of the food bank.
The charity is running low on some important items for its food supplies, and with temperatures getting colder it is thought that demand for their services is likely to rise.
They particularly need the following items: cup a soup, pot noodles, instant mash, mug shots, long life fruit juice, cereal boxes - family boxes, not porridge, small Christmas cakes, custard, steamed puddings, hot chocolate, long life milk and large nappies sizes 5 & 6.
Donation points are located after the tills in Asda Lancaster, Tesco Carnforth, Sainsbury's Morecambe and Sainsbury's Lancaster, so please donate to if you can