Report by Samantha Pope
Thursday, May 3, 2012
A FOODBANK will be established in Clevedon to help people struggling to put food on the table during tough economic times.
Since January a small team of volunteers from Churches Together in Clevedon have been working behind the scenes to establish the facility, which will open in Unit 21 at Hither Green Industrial Estate by the beginning of June.
The current economic climate has seen more and more people having trouble affording enough food for them and their families. In the past two years alone, 120 food parcels have been given out to people in Clevedon by the Crisis Centre Ministries in Bristol.
The rise in the number of people needing such help prompted the idea of establishing a foodbank in Clevedon, which already has more than 40 volunteers from nine different churches in the town.
It works by providing vouchers to people in crisis, who are identified by frontline care professionals such as health visitors, doctors, social workers or church workers.
These vouchers can then be exchanged for a three-day supply of food, which will be donated to the centre by churches, individuals, groups or charities. Collection days will be also held outside supermarkets.
To help get the project off the ground, Clevedon and District Round Table has donated £1,000.
Chairman Mark Jones said: “When we heard this charity was setting up on our doorstep we were inspired to support them. It isn’t just people on low incomes that are feeling the pinch at the moment; redundancy, fewer jobs and relationship breakdowns are having a real impact.”
Jo Lenny, chairman of the Clevedon Foodbank steering group, said: “We have been hugely encouraged, and are extremely grateful by the overwhelming support from organisations like the round table.
“The foodbank has captured the hearts of our town with personal donations and people giving their time willingly. The support from churches from across Clevedon has also been fantastic.”
* For more details about the foodbank, which will be the 187th to be opened in the UK, visit www.clevedon.foodbank.org.uk