Over the course of the past 21 months, the number of food parcels distributed by Trussell Trust (a UK wide network dedicated to supplying essentials to those in need) reached 2.5 million - 980,000 of these went to children. Many large supermarkets are involved in the collection of donations, including; Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda, making it easy to find local food banks and gaining more volunteers from the neighborhood. 

 

There are certain things to remember when donating, for example, the goods must be edible and sealed - otherwise it is unlikely that the food bank will be able to accept. The default donations are tinned products however, it is important to remember that cereal, rice, long-life juice and lentils are valuable and just as in demand. 

Not only are foods key goods, hygiene products are extremely in need too; toothpaste and toothbrushes, shampoo and shower gel plus sanitary towels and nappies are often accepted.

 

 A local food bank set up by two AFC Wimbledon supporters, at the beginning of the pandemic, went the extra mile, including cat and dog food in certain packages as well as collecting clothes for the Christmas season and back to school bags with all the essential items. Distributions are not limited to families in need as local community centres and soup kitchens are frequently being supplied by this food bank. 

 

It is fair to question why these food banks are so needed and whether the pandemic only exposed the lack of attention towards this matter. Although the impact that communities joining together to help makes on the subject is strong, we need to ensure that keeping families fed and provided for is continuous and consistent.