Fight Hunger Create Change

In 2018, Asda, the Trussell Trust, and FareShare launched a new three-year programme to help tackle poverty: Fight Hunger Create Change.

Between April 2018 and March 2019, 1.6 million emergency food parcels were distributed by food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network – a 19% increase year on year. This isn’t right, but we believe this can change.

Through the Fight Hunger Create Change partnership, we’ve been able to better help food banks to ensure the right support is there at the right time.

During the first 12 months of Fight Hunger Create Change, the partnership has:

  • Funded the first phase of the most in-depth piece of research into food bank use to date
  • Supported the development of our advocacy work for long-term solutions to the drivers of food bank use
  • Provided more than one million meals to food banks through customer donations at Asda stores
  • Allowed us to take part in a ground-breaking fresh food pilot linking FareShare and our network of food banks. Already more than a thousand people have benefited from a greater variety of nutritious fresh fruit and vegetables in addition to the standard three-day emergency parcel
  • Provided more than £4 million in grants to food banks to help them provide more support to people locked in poverty. These grants have allowed many food banks to provide further practical support like debt and housing advice to help tackle the root causes of poverty in the UK and help ensure that no one needs a food bank again in the future

Alleviating the symptoms of poverty

While we work in the long-term to tackle the structural issues that lock people in poverty, food banks provide compassionate, practical support to people in crisis.

Thanks to the Fight Hunger Create Change grants scheme, food banks in our network are able to provide even more vital services to people at the point of crisis. From supplying emergency food parcels to providing on-site debt and money advice, the grants allow the food banks to hire specialist advisers, create additional storage space and increase their work to tackle the root causes of poverty in the UK.

Through Fight Hunger Create Change, we’re also able to work more closely with FareShare to supply fresh food to food banks in our network as an addition to the standard three-day food parcels.

Currently, most food banks hand out nutritionally balanced emergency food parcels, which mainly consist of ambient food. The addition of fresh fruit and vegetables will provide extra nutrition to people in crisis, making meals go further and providing an increased sense of dignity.

Tackling the root causes of poverty

Thanks to the partnership we have been able to commission the most in-depth piece of research into food bank use to date. The research, entitled The State of Hunger, will act as a benchmark not just for our charity, but for the Government and wider society, to better understand the structural issues that sweep so many people into poverty and destitution.

The first State of Hunger report, which will be published in October 2019, will focus on the experiences and demographics of the people referred to food banks and the pathways that they take to reach them. By understanding those pathways and how they change over the years, we can work with central government, local councils, referral organisations, and wider society to make the changes that are needed to ensure everyone has enough money coming in to cover the cost of essentials.

We are grateful to Asda and its customers and staff for their ongoing support in the fight against hunger and poverty. Together, we know that we can drive real change and create a future in which no one needs a food bank’s help.