A FOODBANK in East Staffordshire said it is currently low on stock primarily due to a supermarket halting its collection for the local organisation. The Uttoxeter Foodbank run by Renew Church, has provided food and toiletries for “needy-families” in and around the town since 2015. However, the resource said it is currently “running low on certain items” with this “primarily down to ASDA supermarket no longer collecting for our local food bank in their store.”
Uttoxeter Foodbank helper Paul Jones told the Times and Echo: “Firstly, we want to thank all those in our community who have been committed to helping stock and volunteer in the Foodbank.
“At the moment we are running low on tinned vegetables, tinned fruit, UHT milk, tinned fish, cereals and pasta sauces.
“We currently only have a food bank drop off point in the Tesco superstore in Uttoxeter, and the church is also open throughout the week to receive donations directly.”
A spokesperson for Asda told the Times and Echo: “We take our responsibilities as a retailer seriously and are committed to helping fight hunger in the communities we serve.
“Our £20 million partnership with anti-poverty charity, the Trussell Trust and food redistribution charity, Fareshare is creating a long-term positive change to poverty in the UK.
“The programme is enabling more meals to be provided for those in need, tackling the root causes of poverty and we are expanding our food donation activities, so every one of our stores has the ability to donate edible surplus food to local food banks and community groups.”
The spokesman added: “We are in contact with the Renew Church Food Bank to ensure they can still access products from Asda to help continue the great work they do for the local community.”
Waitrose’s Uttoxeter branch, which is located on Trinity Road, also donate via the Trussell Trust.
A spokesperson for the supermarket told the Times and Echo: “Donations made at the (Uttoxeter) shop go to the local Rugeley Foodbank, which provides a steady supply of food to local people who need it most.
“This is co-ordinated through the Trussell Trust, which is a charity that supports a network of food banks across the country – but ultimately all the donations go to local food banks.”
The Uttoxeter Foodbank serves those in the town and anyone in surrounding areas within a five-mile radius but also states that it goes above and beyond to help those outside of this region.
Paul said: “In cases where a person is outside of our area we will put them in contact with their local food bank.
“We have also supported other charitable organisations which operate in a wider area.
“These include bringing stability to those who are released from prison and need support with a food parcel.
“We believe that as Christians we are called to treat those in need as if they are royalty.
“This means treating every person who is referred to us with respect, compassion, and a loving welcome.
“This helps whoever receives a food parcel know that hope can be found no matter how bad a situation gets.
“Our policy as a food bank is to work with organisations and charities in order to see that the right people receive food parcels.
“We have found that many of the people we help are not aware of the help they are entitled to receive and working with other professionals ensures that they get all the help they can.”
If you would like to donate to The Uttoxeter Foodbank, call 01889 567016.
The food bank also urges anyone who may know of someone who might need a food parcel to call the Citizens Advice helpline on 0344 411 1444.
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