A message from Brian Cove, Foodbank Coordinator
Somebody asked me the other day. “Is the Foodbank still operating?” and, of course, I replied “It is - and sadly very much busier than it has ever been. Over the last three months, somedays, the number of clients has doubled and even trebled!”
What has been happening?
SAD that so many people are forced to use this service.
During three sessions in April the Foodbank helped 183 adults and 172 children. In the first four months of this year we gave out 6.69 tons of food to 561 adults and 400 children.
SAD that because of the virus and the need for distancing , we don't have the personal chats over a drink and biscuit which used to be so appreciated by many people. However we do make sure we chat to people while they queue outside and also briefly at the reception table.
GOOD that thanks to the unbelievable generosity of so many individuals and organisations we are receiving enough food to meet the increased demand.
GOOD that we can still offer help and support in these difficult times and people have been moved to say:
‘Can I pass my Food Voucher on to someone else because a friend has given me some food?’ ‘Thank you, I’m going share some of this food with my elderly neighbours.’
and on receiving Easter Eggs for the children a mother sobbed ‘I never expected such kindness.’
GOOD that so many are prepared to volunteer, without them we simply couldn't do it.
The Debt and Money Advice Service.
Some feared that this service was no longer available but thankfully Rajna continues to provide the service by telephone - it is proving to be a considerable success as people have said:
“Thank you so much, I don't know what I would have done. I have no one to talk to or share my problems with.”
“So grateful that I can still get advice from you with the lockdown going on.”
If Rajna and the FREE Debt/Benefits/Money Advice Service could help you or you know of anyone who needs the service, the telephone number is 0121 753 1958.
So what is the future?
To many, the future looks very miserable and uncertain with many saying the future will be very different.
Sadly, the Foodbank will be needed more and more over the next few months. But there is hope:
HOPE from seeing that many people have managed to keep going despite the immense personal problems.
HOPE from the contribution of the many people who have supported and continue to selflessly support the Foodbank with their time.
HOPE from all the people who are generously giving money and food to the work of the Foodbank.
Thank you everyone.