Ellesmere Port & Neston MP, Justin Madders has thanked local residents for their generosity after 170kg of food was donated by local residents to the West Cheshire Foodbank at his latest “Ellesmere Port Giving Day.”
The event, which was held at the Ellesmere Port Asda store on Saturday 13rd October despite wet weather on the day, followed a number of previous collections arranged by the MP. It was held in response to a “Harvest Appeal” by West Cheshire Foodbank, with the charity stating that “our warehouse is looking very empty.” A number of volunteers joined Justin at the event, including local Labour Party members and Councillor Mike Edwardson.
West Cheshire Foodbank is part of a nationwide network of foodbanks, supported by The Trussell Trust, working to combat poverty and hunger across the UK. They provide three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to them in crisis.
Between January and June this year they have given out 2,012 emergency food parcels supporting 4,185 people. This is an increase of 16% compared to the same period in 2017.
The top three reasons for referral (low income, benefit delays and benefit changes) have remained consistent, although the number people referred for benefit delays has increased disproportionately reflecting the current issues many people are facing due to Universal Credit.
Commenting, Justin said:
“I have organised foodbank collections before and I am sure that I will do so again, but I have to say that this is the first time that I’ve done so as a result of the local foodbank warning that they are running out of supplies.
“Since the introduction of Universal Credit, I have met with and heard from a significant number of constituents who have been left in extremely vulnerable situations by the new system.
“I am very proud that local people, many of whom are experiencing difficulties themselves, have demonstrated their willingness to help others in need.
“West Cheshire Foodbank provides a vital lifeline to thousands of people in our community when they need it most and their volunteers give a huge amount of their time to help others. Anyone who wants to find out more can visit their website at westcheshire.foodbank.org.uk or phone 0151 355 7730. Donations can be made any time by dropping in to Trinity Church on Whitby Road.”