Posts in '2021'

Budget 2021: Rishi Sunak misses opportunity to strengthen social security and protect people from poverty

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Blog by Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust

We are almost a year on from the beginning of a devastating pandemic which has taken away people’s lives and livelihoods.

We have seen a monumental rise in levels of serious hardship, record levels of need across our network of food banks and a vast number of people coming to food banks for the first time in their lives.

That is why today’s Budget was such a pivotal moment for our country. It was a vital opportunity to strengthen our social security system and help protect people on the lowest incomes for the difficult year ahead.

In his Budget the Chancellor announced a 6-month extension to the £20 uplift to Universal Credit, which was introduced at the start of the pandemic. While it’s right that this is maintained for six months, this short-term fix does not address the serious hardship and uncertainty families will face when it is removed in September, at a time when unemployment is forecast to increase. What’s more, people on most legacy benefits will continue to miss out.

We know from our recent research that the uplift has provided vital breathing space to hard-pressed budgets, with seven in ten (72%) people on Universal Credit since early 2020 saying the increase has made it easier to afford essentials.

One person, a teacher and a single mother, told us: “[The uplift] has made it possible to survive. Without it I could not afford heating or electricity. The increase has meant that I can get food for the fourth week in a month.”

The risks of removing the uplift are also clear, as one in five people currently on Universal Credit we surveyed think it’s very likely they’ll need support from a food bank if the removal goes ahead as planned. This represents more than one million people.

There are some bright spots in the Budget, which will provide support to people on the lowest incomes. We are pleased the government decided to bring forward plans to extend the period over which people must repay loans owed to the government to cover advance payments. These are loans many people need to take out to cover the five-week wait for a first Universal Credit payment.

The government is also reducing the maximum amount which people can be forced to repay in debts to the Department for Work and Pensions. These measures were meant to come into effect this October, but will now do so in April – something we called for in our recent ‘Lift the Burden’ report.

But this does not come close to mitigating the impact of what will amount to a £1,000 income cut for low-income households in the autumn, taking with it the dignity this lifeline offered.

As we have seen over the last year, illness, disability, family breakdown or the loss of a job can happen to any of us. We have also seen the positive benefits of what can happen when we work together. We owe it to each other to make sure sufficient financial support is in place when we need it most.

We know this can change. It is not too late for the government to rethink this plan. Along with our partners, we are urgently calling for the Chancellor to extend the uplift to 12 months at the very least, preventing people up and down the country from being swept into poverty in the wake of the pandemic.

Last week the Prime Minister promised that the government would ‘continue to look after people throughout this pandemic and beyond’, but the Chancellor’s announcement fails to address the ‘beyond’.

It’s time to build a better future together, taking action to create a stronger, more just society where everyone can afford the basics. That’s why we’re urging the public to join our Hunger Free Future movement to help create a UK without the need for food banks once and for all.

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Budget 2021: our response

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The Chancellor of the Exchequer has set out the government’s spending plans in today’s Budget. The full details of these are available here.

In response, Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust, said:

“Today’s Budget has failed to give security to families on the lowest incomes by refusing to extend the Universal Credit uplift for the full, difficult year ahead. While it’s right the government extended the uplift by six months, this short-term fix does not address the serious hardship and uncertainty families will face when it is removed in September.

“We know removing the uplift could drive more than one million people to food banks and many more people are expected to need Universal Credit as unemployment rises.

“This isn’t right. We know this can change. We and our partners are urgently calling on the Chancellor to re-think and extend the uplift to 12 months at the very least, preventing people up and down the country from being swept into poverty in the wake of the pandemic.

“It’s time to build a better future together, taking action to create a stronger, more just society where everyone can afford the basics.”

Ends

For more information contact the Trussell Trust Press Office at 020 3137 3699 or [email protected]

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The Universal Credit uplift must remain in place

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By Emily Spoor, Research Officer

This week, new benefit statistics show the huge scale of the economic impact of the pandemic. Almost 6 million people are now receiving Universal Credit (UC), up from 2.7 million in January last year and 3 million at the start of the pandemic. This doubling means that around one in seven working-age adults in Great Britain are now receiving support from UC.

New figures also show that in November there were 4.9 million households receiving UC – an increase of more than 80% since the start of the pandemic. The majority of the increase, around 1.4 million of the 2.2 million additional households, are single people with no children. We know that this group is more likely to need support from food banks. Many will be younger adults whose employment has been disproportionately impacted by the lockdown – the unemployment rate for 16-24 year olds has increased by 3.1 percentage points in the last year, compared to just 1.3 percentage points for the overall population.[1]

However, the number of families with children receiving support from UC has still seen an increase of more than 50%, with more than 1.8 million now receiving UC.

During the pandemic, most of these households have been supported by an additional £20 a week to their benefits. By all accounts this uplift has been essential in preventing many people from experiencing poverty during the crisis – although policies like the benefit cap mean not everyone on UC has received the full uplift amount, and people receiving legacy benefits have been left out.

Our research showed that 72% of people receiving UC since early 2020 found the uplift made it easier for them to afford essentials than before. Cutting it would therefore put many at risk of having to go without the basics: 14% of people receiving UC thought it was very likely they’d need to use a food bank following the cut to UC, equating to more than a million people. This would clearly be unacceptable. The government must ensure that the social security provides people with enough income to be able to afford the essentials that we all need.

Further, we know that the economic impact of the pandemic has only just begun to be felt. Nearly a year into the pandemic in the UK the numbers of people on UC continue to climb – and with the furlough scheme rightly still in place to support jobs, we can expect that many of the job losses that result from the pandemic are still to come. In November, the OBR forecasts that unemployment will peak in mid-2021 and only return to pre-pandemic levels in around 4 years’ time.[2]

This context makes clear that the uplift must be maintained in the long term – and extended to people on legacy benefits who have missed out on the uplift. Some have suggested a short, six-month extension to the uplift, but this would mean cutting UC as unemployment peaks and forcing many more to make it through this economic crisis unable to reliably afford to eat, heat their home and pay their rent.

The uplift has been a huge relief for millions of people since April – it must stay in place to support them and the many more who are likely to need our safety net in the coming year.

[1] Office of National Statistics, Employment in the UK: February 2021

[2] Office for Budget Responsibility, Economic and fiscal outlook – November 2020

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Support from Papa John’s reaches £500,000

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In April 2020, we launched a new partnership with Papa John’s and we’re thrilled to announce that their support has now raised an incredible £500,000.

By fundraising on their website for us throughout 2020, Papa John’s have been able to help us make sure food banks can continue to provide emergency support in their communities, as well as work towards building a better future – one where no one need to turn to charity to get by.

At Christmas, Papa John’s ran a stripped back advertising campaign and donated the extra money they would normally have spent on festive creative to us and Crisis. They also donated 50p for every festive meal deal sold, featured customer donation buttons at checkout, and provided dedicated advertising space on their website.

Thanks to the support of customers, the money raised during the Christmas campaign helped to bring the total amount generated through Papa John’s support for the Trussell Trust up to over £500,000!

Head of Corporate Partnerships, Sophie Carre, says:

“Our partnership with Papa John’s and their incredible support means we can continue to respond to the changing situation and ensure food banks continue to provide the lifeline of emergency food and additional support for thousands of people in crisis. It also allows us to move forward with our work to tackle the root causes of poverty and campaign for long-term change. Our goal is ambitious, and this support means we can work together for real, long-term change to create a better future.”

And Papa John’s say:

We have been really pleased with the amount we have been able to raise with the help and support of our generous customers. The Trussell Trust is a fantastic charity who we are proud to work with.

It’s time to build a better future, and we’re so grateful to have partners like Papa John’s standing alongside us and people facing hunger to create change. We look forward to seeing what the partnership brings in 2021!

 

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The real impact of removing the Universal Credit uplift

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“I simply don’t know how I’d manage without it” – people share their experiences of the £20 uplift and the risks of taking it away.

By Emily Spoor, Research Officer

 

In April 2020, as the UK was hit by the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, the UK Government made the crucial step of increasing the Universal Credit Standard Allowance and Working Tax Credit by £20 per week – worth more than £1,000 a year to a household. This decision has offered people dignity during the crisis and prevented tens of thousands from needing to seek help to feed themselves and their family.

Our new research, conducted by YouGov on behalf of the Trussell Trust, shows that the uplift has provided vital breathing space to hard-pressed budgets, with seven in ten (72%) people on Universal Credit since early 2020 saying the increase has made it easier to afford essentials. The risks of removing the uplift are also clear, as one in five people we surveyed think it’s very likely they’ll need support from a food bank if the removal goes ahead as planned.

Here, we explore people’s experiences of the uplift in their own words, as well as their thoughts and fears about a future without it.

 

The uplift means people don’t have to go without essentials.

The most common experience people shared with us was that the uplift allowed them to reliably afford basics, without, for example, having to go without food or ration the amount of time the heating was on. Having to go without essentials had been a common experience for people before the uplift.

“[The uplift] has made it possible to survive. Without it I could not afford heating or electricity.”

“I am a teacher and a single parent… The increase has meant that I can get food for the 4th week in a month.”

Several people explained that the increase meant they no longer needed to make impossible choices about what to go without, such as between eating enough and staying warm, or cutting down on food to afford a crucial, less frequent, purchase like shoes or a coat.

“An additional £80 a month is… the difference between being able to eat and having to choose between heating and food.”

 “I haven’t had to choose between buying some food or a new pair of shoes because mine have got a hole in… I’ve been able to buy both!”

 

The uplift provides financial and mental breathing space, giving a route out of day-to-day survival and hope for the future.

Many people explained that the uplift allowed them to reduce – or even end – the need to rely on debt to cover daily costs. This has a practical and a mental health benefit, as debt repayments and overdraft costs further reduce the amount available to spend on essentials in the future and the feeling of spiralling can cause intense stress and anxiety.

“It’s made a difference in paying bills. I fell in arrears with a few utilities and it’s helping me get back on track.”

“[The uplift has made] a big difference. It meant my payment was bigger than my overdraft limit, so it would definitely get paid off every month.”

Another common experience of the uplift that people shared was the positive impact on their mental and physical health. From a parent being able to afford fresh food for their children to a cancer patient being able to keep the heating on, it was clear the uplift gave people the option of looking after their and their families’ physical health rather than being forced to settle for less.

“[The uplift] has enabled me to eat better. Before the increase I wasn’t able to buy fresh fruit and vegetables, because they were an extra I just could not afford.”

Improved mental health was also mentioned by many: both the absence of negative factors such as stress and anxiety, and actively positive changes such as increased self-worth. People told us that, as the uplift made it easier for people to afford all their essentials, their stress about what they might have to cut back on and how they’d manage to make ends meet was reduced.

“Less stress, money to pay for petrol, better food, less yellow tab food… better mental health, better physical health.”

“It makes me less stressed about the months end when I have to pay for the rent and all the bills. Every little extra helps.”

Several people explained that being able to afford to “contribute” by looking after their family was also hugely beneficial for their mental health. One person was able to save up and buy their family some Christmas presents, while another had been able to pay a monthly amount for a laptop for their son, allowing him to do his schoolwork properly from home.

 “[The uplift has made] an absolutely massive amount of difference both financially and mentally. I’ve been able to contribute more to the household, making me feel more comfortable and worthy of living.”

 

Without the uplift, people will be forced to go without essentials again and find it harder to get back on their feet.

Since these positive impacts have come as a direct result of the £20 uplift, it’s unsurprising that when asked about its removal people told us these improvements to their lives would be reversed. Many people told us that without the uplift they’d be forced into debt to cover the cost of essentials or would be forced to go without again. This is unacceptable – no one should have to go without food, heating or other basics because their benefit income is too low.

“I already have to make choices about what to spend my money [on] and am juggling debts, fuel costs and buying food and essentials. With a retraction of the extra £20, I know I would face hardship, in keeping warm, feeding myself and paying off my credit card (which I used for car repairs)”

Fear and hopelessness about a future of having to manage on less were also common experiences. The prospect of hunger and cold and mounting debts, and fears about eviction or being unable to look after family members, meant the future looked bleak for many.

“Even the thought of my losing this £20 a week brings me close to tears.”

Several people explained that losing the uplift would knock them back, making it harder for them to find work or be financially independent from family. These things contributed to a feeling of hopelessness – it was difficult to see how things might improve for them without the small amount of breathing space the uplift had provided.

“[Losing the uplift would mean] complete loss of all independence and dignity as I’d be dependent on my brother for financial help. It’s humiliating… I will steadily slip further into debt.”

“I’ve been saving for new “work” shoes that are going to last. The retraction of £20 per week would mean I’d have to use that small amount of savings for essentials and continue not applying to jobs that need proper equipment.”

 

The government must continue to protect the millions of people who receive Universal Credit – and the many more who’ll depend on it as the economic consequences of the pandemic play out.

It’s clear that the level of benefits was not adequate going into the pandemic, and that the uplift has been an important lifeline. People’s experiences clearly show that keeping the Universal Credit uplift and extending this lifeline to legacy benefits is the right thing to do – and would help us take a big step towards a hunger free future.

 

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The Trussell Trust and Bank of America form partnership to support people in crisis.

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The Trussell Trust and Bank of America form partnership to support people in crisis. Working to create a hunger free future for all.

Today, the Trussell Trust and Bank of America have entered a partnership as food banks in the charity’s network experience a huge rise in need through the pandemic.

Food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network saw a 47% increase in need during the first six months of the pandemic, with 1.2m emergency food parcels provided to people in crisis between April and September 2020 alone. There has been a huge increase in emergency food going to children, with 2,600 food parcels going to children across the UK every day.

Bank of America will help people in crisis by supporting the Trussell Trust’s network of food banks through grants and operations support. It will also help people in crisis access advice to help them out of hardship through a freephone helpline. Bank of America employees will also support with raising funds and sharing their skills and expertise with the organisation.

Bank of America firmly supports the Trussell Trust’s long-term vision of a UK without the need for food banks and is working alongside them to campaign for a hunger free future.

Emma Revie, chief executive at the Trussell Trust said: “As the coronavirus pandemic continues, we’re working closely with food banks to support them to continue providing vital emergency food to people who can’t afford the essentials.

“Everyone should be able to afford their own food, but right now more people than ever are likely to need a food bank’s help. This partnership will help us support food banks to provide emergency food and practical support to people in crisis, while also working towards our long-term vision of a hunger free future. We’re so grateful to Bank of America for their support.”

Andrea Sullivan, International Executive for Environment, Social and Governance at Bank of America said: “In these challenging times we are committed to working with partners like The Trussell Trust to offer vital financial support in tackling the rise of food poverty across the UK. This partnership will not only provide essential food parcels, but will also fund a dedicated helpline offering access to social support. In addition, through our employees’ time and assistance, we hope to further advance the important work of The Trussell Trust.”

ENDS

 

Contact 

Contact the Trussell Trust Press Office at 020 3137 3699 or [email protected].

 

About the Trussell Trust:

  • We’re here to end the need for food banks in UK.
  • We support a UK-wide network of more than 1,300 food bank centres and together we provide emergency food and support to people locked in poverty, and campaign for change to end the need for food banks in the UK.
  • Our most recent figures for the number of emergency food supplies provided by our network: trusselltrust.org/news-and-blog/latest-stats/.
  • The Trussell Trust’s food bank network brings together volunteers, staff and supporters of all faiths and none to make a difference. Local churches play a vital part in this work, with around 12,000 churches actively involved in donating food, and providing venues, volunteers and financial support for food banks.
  • You can read more about our work at trusselltrust.org .
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Removing the Universal Credit uplift will put millions at risk of hunger

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By Rory Weal, Policy and Public Affairs Manager

Removing the uplift to Universal Credit will put millions at risk of hunger – the UK Government must do the right thing.

We are coming through one of the most testing winters in our modern history. With the vaccine roll-out developing at a pace, and the days getting longer, there are reasons to muster optimism. But one look at the jobless figures will bring anyone firmly down to earth. 

Six million people are currently claiming Universal Credit. As the furlough scheme winds down from the Spring, that number is set to rise even further. The Office for Budget Responsibility does not expect unemployment to fall to pre-crisis levels until 2024. At the same time, need for food banks has hit record levels and shows few signs of waning. 

It is in this context that the government is currently making a decision that will affect the lives of the millions who have struggled the most in our dark winter – whether or not to push ahead with a £20 cut in the Universal Credit standard allowance this spring.  

It is a sad fact – all too familiar to anyone who has been near a food bank – that our benefits system for too long has simply not given people enough money to afford the essentials in life. This reality was rightly recognised by the government last spring, when they acted decisively to uplift Universal Credit by £20 a week. That doesn’t sound like much, but when you’re on the breadline it is a life saver. We know that it has been the difference between many people needing to turn to a food bank and staying afloat. 

But this lifeline is at risk. Unless action is taken, the uplift is set to be whipped away in April, at the same time as support from furlough will wind down. The results could be little short of devastating. 

In our survey of people currently receiving Universal Credit, the consequences of this political choice come through starkly. As many as 20% of people claiming Universal Credit, representing 1.2 million people, say that they are ‘very likely’ to need to use a food bank if the £20 uplift is removed. Many more fear they will go hungry.  Four in ten (41%) say they are ‘very likely’ to have to cut back on food for themselves, representing over 2.4 million people.  These numbers make any cut – at a time of already record hardship – unconscionable. 

Children will suffer too. We know that parents would do almost anything before cutting back on food for their children, yet a quarter of a million families fear this will be the result if the uplift is ended. The evidence is clear  going ahead with the reduction would represent a betrayal of the Prime Minister’s welcome commitment that ‘no child will go hungry as a result of any government inattention’.  

There has been important recognition in recent weeks of this looming cliff edge, and other short-term policy fixes have been mooted. But these do not address the fundamental problem – before the crisis, following years of cuts and freezes, working age benefits simply did not give people enough money to afford the essentials.  This was a significant factor in why we saw food bank use rise year-on-year before the pandemic. We cannot return to that, not least in a period when unemployment will be at record levels and the challenges of finding work much greater as a result. This is an important moment to invest in the government’s flagship Universal Credit system, and help make it the poverty fighting machine we know it can be. 

There is a clear economic case for keeping the lifeline too. As our research shows, families don’t have enough financial resilience to save their extra £20 – they have to spend it in the real economy. It is not just food they will cut back on if it goes, but clothing, heating and other vital essentials. Given this money disproportionately goes to the poorest communities in the UK, this would remove a significant amount of demand from fragile local economies at the very time when spending is desperately needed to propel growth. As a result, not only will whipping it away deprive these families of the essentials, it will undermine economic recovery and the ‘levelling up’ agenda in our poorest communities. 

At the budget in just a few weeks’ time, Rishi Sunak has a choice to make. Do we give people the dignity and means to afford essentials, taking a vital step towards a hunger free future, or do we accept widespread modern-day destitution and ever rising need for food banks? The evidence is in, the uplift has been a lifeline. It must be kept. 

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Our new report calls for the £20 Universal Credit uplift to be extended

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Nearly a quarter of a million parents on Universal Credit fear not being able to properly feed their children if cut to benefit goes ahead, according to new report.

The report from the Trussell Trust warns of growing need for food banks from people claiming Universal Credit as one in five people on the benefit say that they are ‘very likely’ to turn to one, if the £20 rise is removed.

The Trussell Trust is urgently calling on the government to keep the £20 weekly uplift to Universal Credit due to end in April, as a survey reveals the alarming consequences of cutting it.

When the pandemic first hit, the government increased Universal Credit payments by £20 each week which the charity says has prevented tens of thousands of people from needing to use a food bank.

But new research conducted by YouGov on behalf of the Trussell Trust finds 41% of people claiming Universal Credit – representing more than 2.4m people across the UK – fear they will be very likely to cut back on food for themselves if the planned cut goes ahead in April.

Worryingly, 13% of parents surveyed – representing more than 220,000 families – think they would be very likely to cut back on food for their children, meaning they simply would not have enough money to cover the basics.

The report forecasts an increase in the need for food banks amongst people claiming Universal Credit with 20% of people on Universal Credit -representing 1.2 million people – saying they would ‘very likely’ turn to a food bank for help with £20 less a week.

This comes on top of record levels of need experienced at food banks throughout the charity’s network during the pandemic, with huge increases in emergency food going to children. Further, it says these figures are just the tip of the iceberg, as many people will have been helped by other community groups.

The charity says this is about more than food with millions of people set to struggle to pay for clothing and to heat their homes and many saying they will be plunged into debt as a result of the cut.

With just weeks to go until the reduction is due, the charity insists this situation can be turned around. The report shows how the uplift provided welcome relief to hard-pressed budgets, with seven in 10 (72%) people claiming Universal Credit since early 2020 saying it has made buying essentials easier.

The charity joins many other organisations in urging the government to make the uplift permanent, or maintain it for one year at the very least, as well as extend it to people on legacy benefits who were denied the uplift last year. It adds that only by keeping this lifeline in the longer-term will it be possible to work towards creating a hunger free future.

Emma Revie, chief executive at the Trussell Trust, said:

“The £20 increase to Universal Credit introduced at the start of the pandemic has been vital in protecting tens of thousands of people from being swept into serious financial hardship. This survey reveals the shocking consequences of what lies ahead if this lifeline is cut in April. This isn’t right. No one should have to suffer the indignity of relying on emergency food.  It’s clear that action is needed to ensure our benefits system provides people with enough money to cover the essentials. That’s why we’re insisting the government turns this situation around. Keeping the £20 Universal Credit uplift, and extending it to legacy benefits, will provide an anchor from poverty for people who need it most.

The government should continue to do the right thing and keep this lifeline. It is a crucial step in moving towards a hunger free future for the UK.”

ENDS

 

Contact 

Contact the Trussell Trust Press Office at 020 3137 3699 or [email protected]

 

Notes to editors

  1. The research is based on an online survey by YouGov of 1,000 people currently claiming Universal Credit. People were surveyed between 19 to 25 January 2021.
  2. The figures have been weighted to be representative of people claiming Universal Credit. All weighting data provided by the Trussell Trust from Stat-Xplore.
  3. Estimates of the number of people are the Trussell Trust’s own analysis. They are calculated by taking the number of people aged 16+ claiming Universal Credit in December 2020 and multiplying by the survey results. These figures do not include children.
  4. The total number of people aged 16+ in Great Britain claiming Universal Credit in December 2020 was 5,912,000.
  5. Family estimates are based on the number of households claiming Universal Credit with dependent children in August 2020.
  6. The total number of households with dependent children in Great Britain, claiming Universal Credit in August 2020 was 1,721,000.
  7. Only people currently claiming Universal Credit, who were also claiming before April 2020, were asked whether it had made buying the essentials easier.
  8. Estimates of the number of people precented from needing to use a food bank because of the uplift are taken from our Lockdown Lifelines report published in September 2020.

 

Survey results and question wording

As a reminder, the UK Government is currently debating whether the £20 a week increase to Universal Credit standard allowance should end from April 2021.

Thinking about your current financial situation, please imagine that the £20 a week increase were to end. How likely or unlikely is it that you would do each of the following in the future as a direct result of this?

% who say ‘Very likely’ Population estimates
Cut back on clothing for myself 63 3,725,000 adults on UC
Cut back on food for myself 41 2,420,000 adults on UC
Fall behind on your housing costs (e.g. rent, mortgage payments etc.) 19 1,120,000 adults on UC
Cut back on heating your home 36 2,100,000 adults on UC
Seek support from a food bank 20 1,180,000 adults on UC
Cut back on food for my children 13 224,000 families on UC

 

About the Trussell Trust:

  • We’re here to end the need for food banks in UK.
  • We support a UK-wide network of more than 1,300 food bank centres and together we provide emergency food and support to people locked in poverty, and campaign for change to end the need for food banks in the UK.
  • Our most recent figures for the number of emergency food supplies provided by our network: trusselltrust.org/news-and-blog/latest-stats/
  • The Trussell Trust’s food bank network brings together volunteers, staff, and supporters of all faiths and none to make a difference. Local churches play a vital part in this work, with around 12,000 churches actively involved in donating food, and providing venues, volunteers, and financial support for food banks.
  • You can read more about our work at trusselltrust.org.

 

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Hunger Free Future: the campaign so far

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In November 2020, we launched an ambitious campaign to create change – to build a movement of people who will work alongside the Trussell Trust to create a hunger free future.

In the first six months of the pandemic, food banks in the Trussell Trust network gave out a staggering 1.2 million emergency food parcels. That’s one food parcel every 13 seconds, and 2,600 of these went to children every day on average.

Over the past year, we’ve all made incredible changes to the ways we live, work, and look after each other. And in the past few months, we’ve seen amazing compassion and concern for families, children, and people in crisis – with food banks, community groups, and others stepping up to help.

But this kind of help shouldn’t be needed. This isn’t right and as the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continues to unfold, we need change now more than ever. That’s why we’re calling for a hunger free future, and asking people just like you to stand with us and create a different future.

Since Hunger Free Future began, more than 80,000 of you have pledged your voice – thank you! And we’ve raised a fantastic £4 million from our generous supporters, which will help us and our Foodbank Network work towards a future where food banks are no longer needed.

Communities like these in Nottinghamshire have shown us the amazing things we can achieve together. And while food banks work hard to cope with increased need in their areas, they’re also working to create long-term change.

Thanks to supporters like you, we’re making a real difference as we move towards a hunger free future. We know it isn’t right that anyone should need to use a food bank, and we know that tens of thousands of you agree. Looking at what we’ve achieved in just a few months, with so many of you raising your hands to demand fundamental change, both locally and nationally, we know that this year change is possible.

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