Here is an introduction to our project.
We have been established within the town since 2011 and have been working with over 150 different agencies that have referred nearly 23,500 people to us during that time.
As a charity we are covered on a national level by the Trussell Trust. We were originally part of Lighthouse at Weston but since February 2018 we are registered as an independent Charitable Incorporated Organisation (Number 1177071) with a brand new board of trustees.
We receive from the local community and donate to clients up to 40 tonnes of food per year. Our donations come through school and churches, supermarket collections, permanent collections bins, businesses, groups and individuals. We also receive donations of fresh food from local supermarkets. We then give the food back out to those in our town who have fallen into crises.
Today, in Weston-super-Mare, there are families struggling to put food on the table. For people on low incomes, a sudden crises- redundancy, benefit delay or even an unexpected bill – can mean going hungry. There are real people facing real situations and every story is unique.
Clients are referred by frontline agencies via a voucher system. These agencies include the welfare provision team, schools and children’s centres, doctor’s surgeries, citizen’s advice, housing and specialist support agencies and health workers throughout the town. Our aim is to either help prevent things such as family breakdown, housing loss, crime and mental health problems. Or give a helping hand up if the crisis has already caused the knock on effects.
Our volunteers will also take time to listen and signpost people to further support if someone is in need. We can also provide basic essentials such as cutlery, crockery, bedding, clothes, toiletries, nappies and pet food. As part of the Trussell Trust More than Food initiatives we have been offering basic cooking and budgeting skills classes, holiday activities and parenting sessions and are hoping to develop our services in the near future. The food is a short term help, being able to help with the bigger picture is the next stage of the vision we have for the Weston-super-Mare Foodbank.