Caring for local people in crisis: Canterbury Food Bank today launched an appeal for cash donations to help cover increased demand for food and household essentials during the Coronavirus crisis.
The charity has already had to dip into its reserves to cover extra staffing as the pandemic takes hold and more people require its services. The appeal will provide more food, to make up for a potential drop in contributions at supermarkets.
The decision by stores to limit purchases due to panic buying has led to fears shoppers may feel less able to buy extra items to put in food bank baskets. Additionally, people may visit shops less frequently to avoid social contact, limiting their opportunity to give food and other items to the charity.
Canterbury Food Bank chair Martin Ward asked people to donate cash directly and to continue donating food at supermarkets when they can. The charity is experiencing a rise in demand as the crisis continues and needs to replenish stocks on a regular basis. [To donate to the appeal click here.]
The food bank provides emergency three-day food parcels to individuals and families in short-term financial crisis across Canterbury, Whitstable, Herne Bay and surrounding villages. It has donation baskets in all leading supermarkets including Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Morrisons, where people can leave badly-needed items. [To find out more about how the Food Bank operates and who it helps, visit their website.]
The charity has an urgent need for tinned corn beef, tinned pasta, long life fruit juice, tinned potatoes, instant mashed potato, laundry powder and cleaning products. It is also running short of tins of rice pudding, fruit, carrots and long-life milk.
Canterbury Food Bank chair Martin Ward today urged shoppers to continue donating food and for those who can’t to help the charity by donating money to the new appeal. He said: “The country is experiencing an unprecedented crisis and this appeal will help us weather the difficult weeks and months ahead. We need to pull together and we ask people to remember those who can not afford to eat. The supermarket restrictions have been brought about by stockpiling, but there is a real concern that limiting purchases may inadvertently cause food banks harm. We appeal to people to keep donating. If they feel the shopping limits mean they can’t buy food for the charity we would ask them to consider a cash donation instead."
Mr Ward also urged supermarkets to consider implementing a system where shoppers could buy an additional item at the tills, which would then go to the food bank.
In the last year, Canterbury Food Bank has distributed 31,257 meals and its volunteers
have worked unpaid for 16,557 hours.
Canterbury Food Bank is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO).