Posts in '2020'

We need the government to act now

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During the last two weeks of March, food banks in our network reported a shocking 81% increase in need compared to the same period last year – that’s 6,250 food parcels each day, with 3,000 provided for children.

This isn’t right. With a coalition of anti-poverty charities, we’re calling on the government to create a Coronavirus Emergency Income Support Scheme – and in the past fortnight over 2,000 of you have emailed your MP to let them know you agree.

This amazing support is making a real difference, and it’s vital that we don’t stop now.

We’re all facing the same storm, but we aren’t all in the same boat. (more…)

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Food banks matter now more than ever – but we have the power to create change

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In the last few months, we’ve all been hit by something outside our control. As the coronavirus pandemic has swept in, its impact has been felt by all of us, in many different ways.

More and more of us are facing financial insecurity, a loss of control, an uncertainty over what our futures might look like.

But while we’re all being hit by the same storm, we’re not all in the same boat. For some, this sweeping lack of control is new and unsettling. For some, this will be a one-off occurrence from which they’ll recover. But for people living in poverty, this feeling isn’t new. It’s all too familiar.

Feeling trapped, facing limited options, and being let down by systems designed to provide support is the norm for millions of people every day. (more…)

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British Gas support is making a real difference in local communities

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In early April, Centrica and British Gas began working with the Trussell Trust to support food banks during the current coronavirus pandemic. As British Gas engineers and colleagues are currently only attending emergency and essential visits in these challenging times and a number of staff are on furlough, the company has encouraged its employees to volunteer with the Trussell Trust and offer support to food banks. You can find out more about the partnership here.

Since then, thousands of British Gas and Centrica employees have got involved and are making a real difference in their local communities by helping food banks deliver emergency supplies to people’s homes, collect and transport food donations, and sort food safely in food bank warehouses. Employees are also embracing this role at home, setting up home donation stations, buying donations for food banks when doing their own shopping, raising funds and spreading the word on social media about the work of the Trussell Trust. (more…)

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Food banks report record spike in need as coalition of anti-poverty charities call for strong lifeline to be thrown to anyone who needs it

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  • The Trussell Trust reports a soaring 81% increase for emergency food parcels from food banks in its network during the last two weeks of March 2020, compared to the same period in 2019 – including a 122% rise in parcels given to children, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to unfold1
  • Food banks in the Independent Food Aid Network (IFAN) report an average 59% increase in need from February to March. That is 17 times higher than this time last year2
  • A coalition of charities, including Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG), Children’s Society, Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), StepChange and Turn2us, is calling for a temporary Coronavirus Emergency Income Support Scheme to ensure people facing financial hardship can access the resources needed to stay afloat

(more…)

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What we’re learning during the coronavirus outbreak

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In the past few weeks, a lot has changed. As the coronavirus outbreak develops, we’re all adjusting to new ways of working and living, and many of us are dealing with difficult and tragic situations. The pandemic has upended our lives and things are shifting day by day.

And yet, as we adjust to these changes, there are things we can learn from what is happening. There are things we can find comfort in. There are things we can draw hope from. (more…)

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Why language matters – especially during a pandemic

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As the coronavirus outbreak develops, we’ve all got lots to think about: from supporting elderly relatives or friends to looking after our own health, from financial concerns to restrictions on our daily movement. We’re adjusting to huge changes in our day-to-day lives as we work to deal with this ‘new normal’ and the way we talk about poverty and hunger is probably low on many people’s lists of priorities. But it shouldn’t be.

The way we talk about things matters – even during a pandemic. Especially during a pandemic. The way we talk defines how we think about things and what we choose to do about them. As our news and timelines are dominated by statistics and analysis of the outbreak, it’s more important than ever that we think in new and innovative ways to meet the challenges we’re being presented with and pull together as a nation to react with compassion. (more…)

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Coronavirus and food banks: your questions answered

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As the coronavirus outbreak develops, it can be difficult to know where to turn for support. We want to help you find the information you need and answer your questions so that you understand your options and what you can do.

If you have any questions we haven’t answered here, please let us know via email or social media so we can help you.

 

Q: What’s going on at food banks right now? Are they running out of donations? Are they closing?

Food banks are working hard to continue supporting their communities safely. Many have changed how they operate and are looking at new, innovative ways to distribute food to people in financial crisis safely during this time. We’re working closely with each and every food bank in our network to make sure that wherever possible they can continue to support people in crisis in their local communities. (more…)

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Organisations unite to get food to people most in need

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  • More people than ever are expected to use a food bank over the next few months 
  • Many food banks across the UK have reported they are running low on essential food supplies 
  • Local charities and community groups across the UK are also in need of vital food supplies
  • Sainsbury’s, British Gas, The Entertainer, Palletforce and XPO Logistics are working together alongside charities, the Trussell Trust and FareShare, to form part of a national solution to distribute food so food banks can continue to support people most in need 
  • The major organisations are working together to ensure this food reaches food banks and community charities as quickly and safely as possible  

(more…)

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Our NHS is there to support us during this health crisis – our benefits system must also be there for people as we face this economic crisis together

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A blog post by
Garry Lemon
Director of Policy & Research

 

This is not just a health crisis we face. It is also an economic one. The necessary measures we’re all taking to prevent the spread of coronavirus have caused an economic shock that, early signs show, has led to a steep increase in unemployment and drop in incomes.

In response, and to the government’s great credit, a series of measures have been brought in at significant speed and scale. The Coronavirus Jobs Retention scheme aims to keep companies running and people employed and paid. Universal Credit has been strengthened with more money in the standard rate, alongside an increase in the Local Housing Allowance.

National governments with devolved powers are also bringing in extra protection, most notably £45 million has been put into the Scottish Welfare Fund so that local councils can get money to those that need it most. (more…)

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XTX Markets donates £1 million to the Trussell Trust to support food banks during coronavirus pandemic

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Following donations of more than £20 million last week to help charities fighting the effects of Covid-19, XTX Markets has announced this week they are donating a further £1 million to the Trussell Trust, a charity which supports a network of food banks across the UK.

 Last year, food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network provided 1.6m emergency food parcels to people in crisis. More than half a million of these went to children. The charity has warned more people are likely to need a food bank’s help support as a result of the outbreak – especially those who aren’t eligible for sick pay or have unstable jobs. (more…)

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