New figures have revealed a worrying rise in the number of people needing emergency food parcels in the North Cotswolds.
According to statistics released by the Trussell Trust, an organisation that runs more than 400 foodbanks across the UK, the foodbank based in Guiting Power provided 265 three-day emergency food parcels to people between April 2019 to September 2019.
The food parcels helped feed a total of 888 people, of which the foodbank say almost half were children.
This was an 15 percent increase in the number of food parcels and a 26 percent increase in the number of people fed when compared to the same period last year.
The national picture from the Trussell Trust shows the six month period was the busiest half-year period since the charity opened.
During the six months, 823,145 three-day emergency food parcels were given to people in crisis in the UK; more than a third of which went to children.
This is a 23 percent increase on the same period in 2018 – the sharpest rate of increase the charity has seen for the past five years.
Kevin Carden took over as project manager at the foodbank in August.
He said: “The summer holidays were busier than ever, and our shelves were looking quite bare at the beginning of September, but fortunately harvest donations and the Tesco collection have helped us to restock.
“As Christmas nears, our focus is on helping local people in crisis to be able to put food on the table for themselves and their families.
“We make up special hampers with seasonal items such as Christmas cake and mince pies to hand out to our clients in December and are always grateful for food donations.”
The foodbank is currently looking for the following items to make up the seasonal hampers.
They are tins of ham, trifle mix, tin of fruit cocktail, jelly/angel delight, Christmas pudding, bread, cranberry sauce, pickle/chutney, chocolates, treats for children and savoury nibbles.
North Cotswold Foodbank has been providing three-day emergency food supplies and support to local people in crisis since 2011.
They have centres in Bourton-on-the-Water and Moreton-in-Marsh among others.
For more information on how to donate, go to northcotswold.foodbank.org.uk/