Foodbank feeds thousands in Harrow

Harrow Times: Food bank feeds thousands Food bank feeds thousands

Thousands of people have sought emergency support from the borough’s food bank in the past year.

From June 2013 to June 2014 the Harrow Foodbank fed 2,509 people, of whom 988 were children.

Harrow FoodBank is part of the Trussell Trust and provides three days of emergency food to people referred by partner organisations, including the Citizens Advice Bureau, doctors' surgeries and Harrow Borough Council.

Earlier this month the bank moved to new premises in the Phoenix Business Park, in Rosslyn Crescent.

Oky Lee was appointed project manager for the Harrow Foodbank in April.

She said: “With the numbers we have seen in Harrow for the past year I think there are more people out there who need our services and we are just scratching the surface.

“We have people from all sorts of backgrounds need our help. Sometimes parents can be juggling different things and before you know it you find your money won’t stretch as far.

“People may not be getting involved either because they don’t know about our work and we are here to help, or they don’t feel they don’t want to ask for it.”

“I think a lot of people will be surprised or even shocked by the fact we need a foodbank in Harrow.”

Reasons people have given the food bank for needing support include delays to benefit assessments or household incomes not stretching to cover all costs.

During the past year, donations of non-perishable foods have been flooding in to the foodbank, which are stored at its new headquarters.

Ms Lee added: “I have lived in the area for nearly 26 years and I first heard there was a foodbank in Harrow I was very surprised. I didn’t think there was a need for one really.

“It wasn’t until I saw a documentary for Sports Relief in April, about the struggle some people have to go through, that really understood.”

The new base of operations will be the main storage facility and the foodbank will continue to redeem vouchers at Holy Trinity in Wealdstone and St Paul's Church in South Harrow.

Across the country there are more than 430 foodbanks run by the Trussell Trust.

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