Christmas shoppers urged to support the new March Foodbank
- Credit: Archant
The deputy mayor of March, Councillor Kit Owen, issued an appeal on behalf of the town’s new foodbank before it opened its doors to clients for the first time today.
At the opening ceremony, Cllr Owen said: “I hope that this Christmas, the people of March think about what they need to buy, and I call on them to make a donation to the foodbank, to help people in this town who are in genuine need.
“March is a comparatively wealthy town, but there is a need, because people are being referred to this much needed facility.”
A ton of food has already been donated, and the foodbank will be open at the Powerhouse Church every Tuesday from 1pm to 2.30pm, for clients who have been issued with vouchers.
The Mayor of March, Councillor Andrew Pugh, formally opened the facility. He said: “I want to congratulate every who has taken part in the setting up of the foodbank, it is a wonderful gift for the people of March.”
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Barbara Taylor from the foodbank committee explained: “Churches Together in March got the ball rolling, and we have 25 volunteers helping to run the facility. We are grateful to the Powerhouse Church for being our distribution centre, and to Raja Mahmood of the Wine Cellar in March, who has provided us with a store free of charge.”
Clients who need food can obtain vouchers from a variety of sources, including doctors, district nurses. PCSOs, social workers, and head teachers.
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Mrs Taylor added: “The food is for people facing a crisis situation, when people cannot feed their family, or are feeding their family but not themselves. It may be that people are facing illness or redundancy, or other circumstances that cause a cash flow problem.
“The food bank provides a short term solution, with three vouchers issued to clients, and each voucher representing three days worth of food. The food packs are prepared for either single people, couples, or families. It is only through the generosity of local people that this scheme will work.
“As well as giving out food, volunteers will be here with a listening ear. We will be here every Tuesday, including Christmas Eve, and we are already thinking about opening on Fridays as well.”
Clients will be given the food in supermarket carrier bags, donated by Sainsbury’s and Tesco, who are both supporting the scheme.
The foodbank is part of the Ely Foodbank partnership. Karl Relton, chairman of Ely Foodbank trustees, said: “It is wonderful to be able to reach across to March, because we know the need is there.”
Alan Bedwell, store manager at Sainsbury’s in March, said: “We are very pleased to support the foodbank. It is part of our 20:20 vision as a company to support local charities and people in need.”
Pastor Jim MacIntyre from the Powerhouse Church added: “We have donated food to people in need for several years, but now it is official, and clients need to bring vouchers to pick up their food packs.”
The Sainsbury’s store in March will be collecting donations of food from tomorrow (Saturday), and donations can also be made at St Peter’s Church, All Saints School and travel agents Holiday With Us.
Any organisation that would like to become a collection point is asked to contact Mrs Taylor on firstname.lastname@example.org