THREE times as many people in the Oswestry area need the town’s Foodbank compared to this time last year.
Shock figures released this week show that during December and January the combined weight of food distributed was nearly 3,000 kilos, treble the amount that was needed when the Foodbank first opened in November 2011.
There is also a shortage of sugar, tins of meat such as stews, tins of mixed vegetables and green beans.
Foodbank project manager Phil Simpson said: “If statistics are any guide to the difficulties that some people are facing then the figures from the Oswestry and Borders Foodbank show that more and more people in our community are struggling to make ends meet.”
The Foodbank opened its doors in Oswestry just over a year ago with an initial stock of 1200kgs of tinned and dried food. In the first two months just over 600kgs were given out supplying three days worth of food for 83 people.
By comparison in December 2012 the Foodbank supplied food to 150 people (as well as nearly 30 extra Christmas special food parcels) and so far in January 159 people have been helped. In these two months combined the weight of food distributed was nearly 3,000kgs. So in just one year over three times as many people are receiving help from the Foodbank.
Individuals, churches, schools and organisations in the local community have been generous in their support and so far, there has always been enough food on the shelves to meet this growing need.
Mr Simpson said: “We would like to express our thanks to everyone who has supported the project with donations of food or money, especially in the weeks leading to Christmas with extra Christmas treats that allowed us to deliver nearly 30 Christmas hampers to families and individuals in the area.”
The Oswestry and Borders Foodbank was set up by a group of Christians from several different churches in Oswestry and the surrounding district to meet a growing need for emergency food provision. It is run entirely by volunteers and is a Christian organisation motivated by Jesus’ teaching on poverty and injustice.
They operate according to Christian principles of compassion, honesty, integrity, openness, kindness and care of all people, regardless of backgrounds or beliefs.
For the most up to date information on what the Foodbank needs see their website - www. oswestryandborders.foodbank.org.uk.