As we face rising Covid cases across the capital and a new lockdown, we know food banks like ours will sadly be busier than ever.
Across Wandsworth, we’ve been supporting a growing number of local households who’ve been swept into severe hardship by loss of jobs or hours, illness, and benefit payments that aren’t covering the cost of essentials like food, rent and bills.
During December, thanks to the generosity of our supporters, we were able to give supermarket gift cards alongside our emergency food supplies to nearly 500 households referred to us in severe hardship. Local families really appreciated this extra help, which enabled them to choose and buy fresh food and other essentials they needed:
‘I just want to say thank you again for bringing all these shopping bags and the supermarket gift card to my girls and me. I am so happy and really appreciate your help. Thanks a million.‘
Now thanks to the continued generosity of local people and a gift from the Wimbledon Foundation, we’re delighted to be able to continue to provide supermarket gift cards to everyone referred to us, throughout January.
We’ll also continue to reflect back what we’re seeing at the Foodbank; to continue to call for policies and support for residents that can reduce local people’s need for emergency food aid. You can find out more in our new short report, Covid-19: A View from the Foodbank, which we hope will help shine a light on some local and national solutions to hardship and food bank need.
If you’re facing hardship and can’t afford to buy the food you need this week, we’re here to help. Many schools, GPs, children’s centres, mental health teams, housing associations can refer local people to Wandsworth Foodbank, so do ask someone that your in touch with.
Alternatively, you can contact the national Citizens Advice/Trussell Trust helpline – please call for free to talk confidentially to a trained Citizens Advice adviser on 0808 208 2138 (open Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm).