In the last 5 years there has been a 73% rise in food banks in the UK and this is due to income not covering essential costs, benefit delays and benefit changes, and the bedroom tax.
The History of the Food Bank. A Trust called the Trussell Trust originally set-up to help children sleeping at railway stations in Bulgaria, a charity founded by a lady – Betty Trussell in Salisbury. The lady died and she left her legacy to her family, who set up the first food bank in their hometown in 2000, after they were contacted by a woman who couldn’t feed her children.
With the growing food banks in the UK and the collapsing welfare state and the rise of 23% from 2018 – 19 of users and with over ½ million children receiving food parcels. The Trust hands out 2 out of 3 food parcels in the UK and works with other charities to stop hunger.
The food bank varies from area to area and volunteers, over 28,000 people sort out the food in places like churches, hospitals, schools, supermarkets and some workplaces. Professionals such as Doctors, Social Services, Citizen Advice refer people to the food banks with a food voucher.
Campaigning and Research. The Trust also carries out the use of the food banks in the UK, working with food banks in their networks to research for change to stop people using food banks in the future. A research project called the State of Hunger, has been the most extensive research to date on the use of food banks in the UK and the first release of data was in November 2019. The Trust supports, End Hunger UK, All Kids Count, Lift The Ban, Stop the #DebtThreats, their own campaign #5WeeksTooLong and they are backed by a range of organisations, The Childrens Society, The Disability Benefits Consortium, Child Poverty Action Group, Church Action on Poverty, Gingerbread & Homeless Link.
Johanna Boal, Beverley