The Shoreditch Shopping List: let's end the need for food banks in the UK

Last year, food banks in the Trussell Trust network distributed 1.6 million food parcels – that’s more than 4,000 parcels given to people every day. And the numbers just keep growing.

This isn’t right. No charity can replace the dignity of buying your own food.

The good news is, we know what’s driving the need for food banks – and we know that if we work together, this can change.

Artist Frankie Beckley created the Shoreditch Shopping List to highlight the reality people are facing, and to show how we can all get involved in helping end the need for food banks.

What's happening?

£50. That’s the average weekly income after housing costs for households who need to use a food bank. Just £50 – to pay bills, buy food, get their kids to school.

94% of people using food banks are in real destitution. They can’t afford to buy the essentials we all need to eat, stay warm and dry, and keep clean.

Often, it’s the people most in need of support who are forced to use a food bank.


In the UK, we believe in supporting each other. We rely on the NHS for our healthcare, the police for our safety, the fire department in an emergency. And we created out benefits system for the same reason – to provide support for those that need it when they need it most.

But right now, it’s not working for everyone.

Problems with the benefits system are pushing people to food banks – benefit payments not covering the cost of living, delays in payments (like the five week wait for Universal Credit), and people being turned down for disability benefits when they really need that help are all playing a part.

The good news is that it’s in our power to change things. We created the benefits system, and together we can fix it so it works for everyone.

You can help.

  1. Spread the word. Tweet about what needs to change with #ThisCanChange. Help us get the word out and shift the narrative on poverty.
  2. Campaign for change. Sign up to #5WeeksTooLong and join the 15,000 others who are calling for an end to the five week wait for Universal Credit.
  3. Make a donation. Donate to the Trussell Trust to help create change through research, campaigning, and local support.
  4. Get involved. Make Time for Trussell and help raise awareness and vital funds.
  5. Support your local food bank. Get in touch with them first to find out what supplies they need most.