Wandsworth Food Bank

report by Clive Moir

Established earlier this year and managed at St Marks Church Battersea Rise The Wandsworth Food Bank, part of a nation wide network of food banks initiated by The Trussell Trust, with the aim of providing emergency food and support to individuals and families in crisis across   Borough of Wandsworth.

Without any previous experience I had no certain expectation of the generosity of the congregation of St Mary’s and the pupils of St Thomas’s kindergarten when I called at the church to collect the donations from the Harvest Festival services. Delighted to find a varied selection of tinned, non perishable dried foods, long life UHT milk and fruit juices and some less essential treats which with the help of Sunny Walker-Kier I loaded into my car for transportation to St Marks where the food donated through churches, schools, businesses and special supermarket collection days is sorted by volunteers and stored. Local care professionals are issued with food vouchers which they give to individuals and families that have been assessed to be in crisis. The recipients are then able to bring the vouchers to one of the drop-in sessions held across the Borough on different days of the week. Friendly volunteers will exchange the vouchers for 3 days of emergency food for their household. In an attempt to help resolve longer term issues the recipients are also given advise and directions to other available social services.

Since commencing operations in May The Food Bank has helped to feed over 600 people in the Borough. This vital service is completely dependent on the generosity of donors and regular donations throughout the year are required to maintain this work in helping individuals and families in crisis. Further information can be found wandsworth.foodbank.org.uk.

Thanks to all who have supported this important programme.

With best wishes
Clive Moir