FOODBANK volunteers say some months the charity is giving away more food than it receives.
Stratford Foodbank has been supporting those in need for the last three and a half years, and in that time the number of people using the service has doubled to nearly 200 a month.
And while generous residents continue to support the charity’s work with food donations, volunteers have revealed more food can sometimes be given out than it receives.
But volunteer Gavin Griffiths says the foodbank works hard to ensure regular donation events are held to tide the service over on quieter months.
He said: “Unfortunately we are continuing to see a significant increase in use and some months we are giving away more food than we receive.
“Some months there are larger inflows than others. On the outflow side some months are busier than others depending on what’s going on. So for example when it gets cold people start using the central heating which can put pressure on household budgets, school holidays play a part and changes in how benefits are paid has had an effect on people’s household budgeting.
“Neither donations nor support are constant. We operate knowing this and have brilliant teams which look at supply and demand and run the warehouse, continually monitoring stock levels.
“The community always responds to our appeals and so the service, thankfully, remains viable.”
Foodbank vouchers are given to those in need by a professional such as a doctor or social worker. It then entitles them to a three-day emergency supply of food.
But volunteers expect demand on the charity to continue to increase and are appealing to people to continue donating.
Gavin added: “Demand is increasing year on year so we constantly have to work to inform the public that donating to us isn’t a one off thing, it’s a continual process.
“In our three and half years of operation, Stratford has been overwhelmingly generous to the Foodbank.
“Every tin donated and every minute volunteered really does make a difference to those in our town facing crisis.”
Visit stratforduponavon.foodbank.org.uk for more information on donating.