Worrying rise in food bank demand

An urgent appeal is being made to the people of Galloway as local food bank supplies run worryingly low.

The Machars Churches Basics Food Bank saw a rise in demand throughout November leaving its shelves emptier than expected in the run-up to Christmas.

And now organisers are asking shoppers to add a little extra to their trolleys when out buying the turkey this week, or rummage in the kitchen cupboards and donate what you don’t need.

Marlane Cash, food bank co-ordinator, said: “The generosity of the donating public has been so very much appreciated in the past and we would like to appeal to everybody to please keep the donations coming in as we are anticipating an even bigger increase in requests for food during the lead up to Christmas. All donations would be most gratefully received.”

Food banks are used by people from all walks of life – some of whom may be closer to home than we realise.

Since The Machars Food Bank began in December 2012, it has provided 3498 packages to desperate families and individual.

Statistics from national food bank charity, the Trussell Trust, show that only 3.6% of food bank requests are from the unemployed with 20% from working families with low incomes.

Much-needed items include non-perishables such as cans and jars of food, nappies, toilet rolls and other toiletries.

Users of the local food bank – which is an emergency aid for those with no other option rather than a regular solution – are referred by social services or other agencies, or by calling Marlane on 07884 370 419.

l Donation points are at Sainsbury, the Co-op, Penninghame Primary School, Douglas Ewart School, Penninghame St Johns Church, Monigaff Church and Challoch Church - all in and around Newton Stewart; Wigtown Library, Church of Scotland Church, Baptist Church and Wigtown Primary School - all Wigtown; Kirkinner/Sorbie Church of Scotland Churches; Port William/Mochrum- Church of Scotland Churches, Port William community shop and Port William Primary School.