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Warning of falling supplies by Deal Area Foodbank this summer

Deal Area Foodbank warns that it is running dangerously low on supplies.

It also expects a heightened demand when the school summer holidays begin in July because children no longer have access to free school meals.

This year, from January to May, it has given out 16,849 tonnes of food with only 12,550 having been donated.

Bare shelves at the Foodbank warehouse in Deal from last year's shortages
Bare shelves at the Foodbank warehouse in Deal from last year's shortages

It compares with 14,851 given out and 11.334 donated between January and May 2018.

This year the Foodbank has given food parcels to 872 adults and 460 children compared with 749 adults and 462 children this time last year.

Project co-ordinator Sheila Ward said: "We are currently in a position where we are having to be really careful about how much food we give to vulnerable people because there simply isn't enough to go around.

"People here are incredibly kind and generous, and I know they give what they can.

"However, we're struggling every week to provide families and single people with food parcels that meet their needs.

"As the summer holidays approach and children don't have access to breakfast clubs, free school meals, and after school clubs for food, I'm worried we are going to struggle to help fill that gap."

Deal Area Foodbank says people use its services for many reasons.

Project co-ordinator Sheila Wardat the Deal Foodbank. Picture: Chris Davey
Project co-ordinator Sheila Wardat the Deal Foodbank. Picture: Chris Davey

Ms Ward explained: "It's more often than one reason, for example benefit delays, or cuts, delayed wages, or family breakdown.

"Sometimes a combination of all these factors mean that a person simply doesn't have any money left for food for their children and themselves."

Deal Area Foodbank had warned of shortages last June.

It then said that more than 500 people had relied on the charity;s food supplies since April 2018.

That was an increase of 385 since the same period in 2017 but the amount of donations was not matching that demand.

If you want to donate supplies you can do so using collection bins at the Co-operative storesat Sandwich, Aylesham and Mill Hill and Hamiliton Road in Deal.

They can also do it at Tesco in Westwood Cross, Poundland in Deal and Sainsbury's inDeal.

There are also collection bins at most churches in Deal, Walmer, Aylesham and surrounding villages and at many schools in the area.

To make bulk donations volunteers can arrange to collect from your home.

You can telephone the warehouse from Tuesdays to Thursdays on 01304 728428.

Deal Area Foodbank is especially short of instant mash, tinned vegetables and pulses, tinned custard, rice pudding, tinned fish, ketchup andbrown sauce.

MeanwhileDover Foodbank has listed its most wanted items for June.

They are longlife fruit juice, can openers, jam, sugar, tinned fish, small jars of instant coffee, pasta sauce, UHT and dried milk, squash and instant mashed potato.

The Foodbank is currently well supplied with bottled water, tea and soya milk.

Items can be delivered to Dover’s branches of NatWest, Nationwide, Halifax, Tesco and Morrisonsand the Associates hair salon in the High Street.

For more information about Dover Foodbank see its website dover.foodbank.org.uk

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