A Lewisham-based charity has launched a crisis appeal after revealing that around one in four households in Lewisham are now affected by food and fuel poverty.

Lewisham Local has launched a cost-of-living crisis appeal to ask those who can afford it to donate some of their recent council tax energy rebate to help others in the borough.

The charity, who host Lewisham’s Food Partnership, hope that this fund can help people who are struggling to keep up with the rising food prices and energy costs.

Lewisham Local brings different food banks together to help maximise help for people in the borough.

Alexandra McMillan, CEO and founder of the Legendary Community Club food bank, said: “The cost of living crisis is having a catastrophic effect, I’ve never witnessed a time so full of fear, it’s becoming an everyday thing to hear ‘I can’t cope’ or ‘I don’t know what to do.’ “These words cannot be ignored.”

Lewisham Local added that households have rapidly exhausted funds during the crisis and are now unable to top up their meters and access the energy services we all rely on to cook, refrigerate food, or take a hot shower.

A spokesperson for the charity said: “This will leave many people having to choose between heating their homes and feeding their families this winter.”

50 per cent of the proceeds from the crisis appeal will go towards supporting the community food banks whilst the other half will go to Warmer Together Lewisham 2022 – an initiative led by South East London Community Energy to provide energy saving advice to Lewisham's most vulnerable residents.

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Sharon Shamir, founder of Feed the Hill food banks, said: “Demand is rising at our social supermarket – typically households and families who have found themselves tipped over the edge from coping financially to suddenly, as prices rise, having to choose between heating and eating, or skipping meals in order to keep their young children fed.

“We are experiencing an ongoing increase in demand as the cost-of-living rises - and of course our own costs are going up too.”

Lewisham Local say there’s more need now than they could possibly cover alone, so they need your help.

Simon Riddle, local giving programme manager, added: “We hear lots on the news about the cost-of-living crisis - this is your chance to make a difference right on our doorsteps.”

If you are able to donate, you can do so by visiting their website here.

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