Our Story

How The Trussell Trust got to where it is today...

The Trussell Trust supports a network of over 420 foodbanks, working out of more than 1,200 foodbank centres, to provide emergency food and support to hundreds of thousands of people in crisis in the UK.

The Trussell Trust is founded

Carol and Paddy Henderson founded The Trussell Trust in 1997 based on a legacy left by Carol’s mother, Betty Trussell.

The Trussell Trust’s initial Bulgaria projects focused on improving conditions for the 60+ children sleeping at Central Railway Station in Bulgaria.

In 2000, Paddy received a call from a mother in Salisbury saying: “My children are going to bed hungry tonight – what are you going to do about it?”

Paddy investigated data on poverty and deprivation in the UK and found that significant numbers of people faced going hungry as a result of a sudden crisis. So Paddy started Salisbury Foodbank in his garden shed and garage, providing three days’ of emergency food to local people in crisis.

In 2004, the UK Foodbank Network was launched partnering with churches and organisations nationwide who wanted to respond to the need they saw in their communities.

Local communities

Passionate about the impact of working with local communities to discover and find solutions to local need, The Trussell Trust has launched several practical and innovative projects in partnership with local communities since its foundation in 1997.

The Trussell Trust now runs a network of foodbanks who provide emergency food to local people, and support to help people resolve the underlying causes of their crises. Together, we also campaign for structural change on a local and national level to help end hunger and poverty in the UK.

As well as foodbanks, our Social Enterprises provide vital funds as well as volunteering opportunities for people of all backgrounds and abilities. The important work we started in Bulgaria is now being continued by our international partner FSCI, to break the cycle of poverty in the Balkans and Eastern Europe.