East Lancs foodbanks helped hundreds in run-up to Christmas

First published in News Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Photograph of the Author by

THE number of people using East Lancashire’s foodbanks over the Christmas period has rocketed, the Lancashire Telegraph can reveal.

In Blackburn 638 meals were distributed last month - three-and-a-half times the amount provided in December 2012.

Almost half of those in need - 305 - were children, according to figures collected by the foodbank’s project manager, Ros Duerden.

In Burnley and Hyndburn, Community Solutions received 484 referrals to their service, a 128 per cent increase on December 2012.

Ms Duerden said the figures were even more concerning given that the Blackburn Foodbank was closed for more than a week over Christmas and the New Year.

She said: “We closed simply because many of the agencies we work with, those who verify that people’s needs are genuine, were also closed.

“We flooded the agencies with food boxes before Christmas and their emergency teams were on hand to give them out when needed.

“We were very, very busy in the run up to Christmas.”

Among more than 100 agencies which recommend people to the foodbank are schools, children’s centres, GPs, charities and council departments.

In December 2012, the same foodbank helped 184 people, although it had only been in operation for one month at that point.

Caroline Collins, from Rossendale’s RAFT Foundation, which sent food parcels to 180 families last month, urged communities to continue to support the food banks.

She said: “Everything we do is made possible because of a huge collective effort.

Genevieve Waite, from Community Solutions, added: “We were receiving extra donations in the run-up to Christmas but the work we do is still needed all year round.

“The need is huge and we have an incredible opportunity to respond further: increase our storage space; increase our volunteers; increase partnerships; increase food diversion from landfill; increase the number of people supported and influence nationally to provide a food bank model with a difference.”

Comments (9)

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4:19pm Sat 4 Jan 14

ron1946 says...

with the price of fags and booze going up we'll all need foodbanks this year
with the price of fags and booze going up we'll all need foodbanks this year ron1946
  • Score: -9

4:32pm Sat 4 Jan 14

burner says...

Less fags, less booze, no scratch cards, no mobile internet contracts, no Sky subscriptions , no dealing = no need for food banks.
Less fags, less booze, no scratch cards, no mobile internet contracts, no Sky subscriptions , no dealing = no need for food banks. burner
  • Score: -3

5:18pm Sat 4 Jan 14

2 for 5p ridesagain says...

When you get fools giving away free food your bound to get scroungers turning up.
It's not a case of they can't afford to eat its a case of they would rather spend there money on fags, beer, drugs, mobile, ect ect. , .
Pleases let me know why some people on benefits can manage ok, maybe not the life of Riley, but they get by ok. Then you get others who are reliant on, Foodbanks, why.?
When you get fools giving away free food your bound to get scroungers turning up. It's not a case of they can't afford to eat its a case of they would rather spend there money on fags, beer, drugs, mobile, ect ect. , . Pleases let me know why some people on benefits can manage ok, maybe not the life of Riley, but they get by ok. Then you get others who are reliant on, Foodbanks, why.? 2 for 5p ridesagain
  • Score: -2

5:32pm Sat 4 Jan 14

ron1946 says...

2 for 5p ridesagain wrote:
When you get fools giving away free food your bound to get scroungers turning up. It's not a case of they can't afford to eat its a case of they would rather spend there money on fags, beer, drugs, mobile, ect ect. , . Pleases let me know why some people on benefits can manage ok, maybe not the life of Riley, but they get by ok. Then you get others who are reliant on, Foodbanks, why.?
spot on how many people queue at foodbanks with the latest mobile phone in their pocket/handbag with a taxi waiting ?
[quote][p][bold]2 for 5p ridesagain[/bold] wrote: When you get fools giving away free food your bound to get scroungers turning up. It's not a case of they can't afford to eat its a case of they would rather spend there money on fags, beer, drugs, mobile, ect ect. , . Pleases let me know why some people on benefits can manage ok, maybe not the life of Riley, but they get by ok. Then you get others who are reliant on, Foodbanks, why.?[/p][/quote]spot on how many people queue at foodbanks with the latest mobile phone in their pocket/handbag with a taxi waiting ? ron1946
  • Score: -2

7:12pm Sat 4 Jan 14

churchman says...

i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke
i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke churchman
  • Score: -2

11:55pm Sat 4 Jan 14

Michael@ClitheroeSince58 says...

Don't let this scum Nazi scum turn your hearts people, do the right thing help people struggling to make ends meet and lets get out of this horrible mess together as a society that cares.
Don't let this scum Nazi scum turn your hearts people, do the right thing help people struggling to make ends meet and lets get out of this horrible mess together as a society that cares. Michael@ClitheroeSince58
  • Score: 11

3:47am Sun 5 Jan 14

Timefor says...

I absolutely agree with Michael@ClitheroeSin
ce58 and hold a view that, as a Country, we should be ashamed that this situation has developed. Last month, our government even voted against a motion to hold an inquiry into the reasons for the explosion in use of foodbanks. Anyone wonder why this might be? Mind you it is also fair to note that some MPs didn't even turn up to vote eg G BIrtwistle Burnley was officially recorded as "absent"

I read what the trolls have written so far but was seems equally clear to me is that the real causes are well reported and known and none who can affect these is prepared to do anything. Nope, much easier to allow the us-v-themism to run and develop.

To be clear, the reason people use foodbanks is because they are poor and this can be put down to poor wages, inequality and the environment we are in. Time someone stood up in this, what, the 7th or 8th richest nation in the world, declared this an unsatisfactory state of affairs and set about abolishing poverty, Hopefully most will remember this situation amongst a host of others which have been caused by government policies when it comes time to vote.
I absolutely agree with Michael@ClitheroeSin ce58 and hold a view that, as a Country, we should be ashamed that this situation has developed. Last month, our government even voted against a motion to hold an inquiry into the reasons for the explosion in use of foodbanks. Anyone wonder why this might be? Mind you it is also fair to note that some MPs didn't even turn up to vote eg G BIrtwistle Burnley was officially recorded as "absent" I read what the trolls have written so far but was seems equally clear to me is that the real causes are well reported and known and none who can affect these is prepared to do anything. Nope, much easier to allow the us-v-themism to run and develop. To be clear, the reason people use foodbanks is because they are poor and this can be put down to poor wages, inequality and the environment we are in. Time someone stood up in this, what, the 7th or 8th richest nation in the world, declared this an unsatisfactory state of affairs and set about abolishing poverty, Hopefully most will remember this situation amongst a host of others which have been caused by government policies when it comes time to vote. Timefor
  • Score: 7

10:24am Sun 5 Jan 14

Chris P Bacon says...

churchman wrote:
i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke
While you inevitably get such people, only the terminally tight would hide behind them as a reason to remain so. It is an undeniable fact that there are those who are in genuine need and for every family you claim to know, there will be twenty families without any of those things whose children are going to school hungry and/or poorly clothed. What are YOU going to do about that? Yes you. Give us more anecdotes (the plural of which is NOT evidence) or go and look at the situation yourself?
[quote][p][bold]churchman[/bold] wrote: i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke[/p][/quote]While you inevitably get such people, only the terminally tight would hide behind them as a reason to remain so. It is an undeniable fact that there are those who are in genuine need and for every family you claim to know, there will be twenty families without any of those things whose children are going to school hungry and/or poorly clothed. What are YOU going to do about that? Yes you. Give us more anecdotes (the plural of which is NOT evidence) or go and look at the situation yourself? Chris P Bacon
  • Score: 10

9:14pm Sun 5 Jan 14

foxyman says...

churchman wrote:
i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke
I take it you've seen them then churchman?
[quote][p][bold]churchman[/bold] wrote: i know a family with 2 kids and both parents working,2 cars and all the mod cons in the house,who are the first for hand outs at food banks and maundy grange.whilst something is being given free in this world,then step up the scroungers.total joke[/p][/quote]I take it you've seen them then churchman? foxyman
  • Score: 0

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