Foodbank joins the biggest ever appeal

A FOODBANK which has distributed more than 5,000kg of food to people in crisis in its first seven months has joined a supermarket initiative.

Hastings Foodbank based at Kings Church Hastings, which launched in April this year, is part of Tesco’s “Help Feed People in Need” food collection appeal, the largest of its kind.

Volunteers will be collecting at Tesco Extra in Hollington tomorrow (Saturday, December 1), and all donations will go to local people.

The supermarket has also pledged to give the foodbank an additional 30 per cent on top of anything that is given by the public.

Jeff Beale, Hastings Foodbank project leader, said: “Over 650 people have been helped by Hastings Foodbank since April 2012 as more people struggle to make ends meet in the current economic climate.

“We’re hoping that many local people will donate at Tesco to help stop people going hungry in Hastings and St Leonards this Christmas.”

The foodbank now works with 37 local agencies which can give vouchers to people in crisis, which can be exchanged for a supply of food to last at least three days.

These include Action for Change, Adult Social Care, Amicus Horizon, Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB 1066), HBC Housing, Home Start, and Homeworks.

Natalie Williams, communications manager at Kings Church Hastings, said: “When we set it up we recognised there was going to be a need in Hastings and St Leonards, and wanted to start quite slowly and not get overwhelmed.

“In a week now we can feed over 30, it just seems to be building and building.

“For us, it’s great to do something practical to help in the town, and it’s great to have the support of a number of churches and agencies.

Individuals and families in crisis helped by the foodbank include those on low incomes who face unexpected bills, those who have suddenly found themselves unable to work, and victims of domestic violence. Natalie added that public support for the Hastings Foodbank had been fantastic.

“I think the reason that the community is so supportive is because they recognise it could happen to anyone,” she said.

Contact the Hastings Foodbank on info@hastings.foodbank.org.uk or visit www.hastings.foodbank.org.uk.