Every day, people around the UK are going hungry. Problems such as redundancy, illness, benefit delays, debt, family breakdown, low income and the increasing cost of living mean that 13 million people in the UK now live below the poverty line. People in our own corner of north London will struggle to feed themselves and their families this week. So two of our young people, Grace and Wes Wroe, have decided to take action. They’ve launched a weekly food collection at St Luke’s to contribute to a local foodbank, where people in crisis situations can get emergency food and support. It’s part of the Trussell Trust, which has partnered with churches and communities to open over 325 foodbanks nationwide.
“For this to work, we need two things,” says Grace. “Firstly that, each week, those who can should bring one or two items of long-life food to church, and leave them in the collection box outside the kitchen. Suitable products include powdered milk, sugar, tinned soups, packets of rice and pasta, cereals, pasta sauces, tea bags, instant coffee, instant mash, tinned meat and fish, and tinned vegetables and fruit.
“Secondly, we need several more volunteers to take collections to the Islington Foodbank on Tufnell Park Road, five minutes from St Luke’s. If we get enough volunteers, each person will only have to do this once every two months.”
In 2012-13, foodbanks fed 346,992 people nationwide – and of those, 126,889 were children. If you’d like to help, please get into the habit of bringing your contributions every week, and consider joining the rota to transport goods. To volunteer or find out more, have a word with Grace, or email Pat at email@example.com and she’ll pass your message on.
“Thank you for helping us,” says Grace. “Here’s to feeding the hungry.”
For a comprehensive list of foods suitable for donation, visit www.trusselltrust.org/resources/documents/foodbank/ShoppingList.pdf