In 2018 Colchester Foodbank, the busiest Foodbank in Essex, provided three day emergency food supplies to over 7,000 local people in crisis, over a third of which went to children. The foodbank is to open on a sixth day a week with support from the Community Fund from Colchester Borough Homes and One Colchester Winter Resilience Fund. People had complained that they couldn’t access the Foodbank on weekdays because loved ones who would help them to get to the Foodbank are working. The Foodbank are piloting opening Saturdays to see if this helps better manage the demand for the service.
Michael Beckett, Foodbank Manager at Colchester Foodbank said:
“For the last decade, the foodbank has seen a trend of increasing demand and with the ongoing impact of Universal Credit and Brexit we don’t expect this trend to change anytime soon. It isn’t right that people especially children suffer without food in Colchester or the surrounding area.
“We continue to work with other foodbanks across the country to campaign for long-term change, so hopefully we can reach a future where the foodbank can close through lack of demand. Whilst that work is underway, we’ll do all we can to make sure local people at risk of hunger get crucial support including opening on Saturdays now. We’re extremely fortunate that local people and organisation are so generous allowing us to do this.”
Chief Executive of Colchester Borough Homes Gareth Mitchell said:
“I’m extremely pleased that the Colchester Borough Homes Community Fund has been able to help organisations as important as Colchester Foodbank. They are doing crucial work in the local community and we are proud that the funding is being used to expand the service they offer.
“The Community Fund shows our commitment to making a difference in communities across the Borough.”
The One Colchester Winter Resilience Funding Panel said:
”The purpose of the One Colchester Winter Resilience Fund is to provide additional capacity to voluntary and community groups supporting at risk groups, residents and projects that help local people during the Winter period. We are pleased to be able to assist Colchester Foodbank to address the needs of our community members.”
The Foodbank are grateful for the support from our local community. Donations of food items like tinned vegetables, small packets of rice, packets of 80 teabags, longlife fruit juice cartons and other things like washing capsules, shaving cream, deodorant, size 4 to 6 nappies are particularly needed, and can be made by dropping off donations at our warehouse or at supermarkets. People can also donate money either as a one of gift or even better commit to giving a regular monthly gift by visiting Colchester Foodbank’s website page. www.colchester.foodbank.org.uk/give-help/donate-money
Michael Beckett, invited you to find out more:
“If you have never visited the Foodbank to see what they do perhaps you would like to pop by and find out for yourself? Colchester Foodbank is at 33 Moorside Business Park, Eastgates CO1 2ZF near the Royal Mail sorting office, open from 10am to 2pm Monday to Saturday. You can also visit our partners at Brightlingsea Foodbank on Wednesdays 10.30am to 12.30pm at Brightlingsea Parish Hall and Wivenhoe Foodbank on Thursdays 10 am to 12 noon at Wivenhoe Congregational Church. We look forward to meeting you”