Hammersmith & Fulham Council is providing extra support to the Hammersmith & Fulham Foodbank (HFFB) to keep more families out of crisis.
The number of food parcels given to families visiting HFFB during 2017 was 9,430 – almost double the number handed out in 2016. Many people who visit the Foodbank also need support with a range of issues, including managing debt, paying bills, applying for benefits and avoiding being made homeless.
“The extra money from the council will fund important new research to identify the main needs of those visiting the service”, said Cllr Sue Fennimore, Deputy Leader of H&F Council.
In addition, the funds will help to cover the Foodbank’s growing running costs and the provision of essential supplies as the number of visitors continues to increase.
The rise in the number of families needing help has been largely driven by the government roll-out of Universal Credit, forcing many to wait weeks without any money to pay for basic needs.
“The council’s special grant of £96,000 will ensure the Foodbank can continue to help everyone that comes through their doors, by being able to provide the right help at the right time”, said Cllr Fennimore.
“It is appalling that in this day and age families are being forced to make a decision between paying the bills or eating a proper meal.”
HFFB has welcomed the news of extra council funding which will be phased over a 15-month period.
“We want to ensure that everyone who comes to us is given the right help to get them back on their feet,” said Daphine Aikens, Chief Executive of HFFB.
“Our research project will look at what services our clients need in order to give them the best possible help and advice, and what additional support we can provide in partnership with other local advice organisations,” Daphine added.
How to help
HFFB is still in need of regular donations for food parcels. You can help by donating any of the following items:
- Tinned fruit and vegetables
- Long life juice
- UHT milk
- Tinned rice pudding and other non-refrigerated desserts
- Tinned meat
- Pasta sauce in jars
You can find your closest donation point at H&F Foodbank’s website.
The Foodbank cannot accept any fresh produce. The Foodbank has three sites across the borough and provides other vital services, including two Citizen Advice Bureau advisers who are funded by H&F Council.