Marcella’s Story

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“The foodbank gave me faith that there are people who understand and who you can trust.”

For nine years, Marcella, 32, a trained veterinary nurse from Chelmsford, has suffered from a chronic spinal condition. Unfortunately, when her health deteriorated, she was forced to stop working to undergo a spinal operation and it was then that she began to notice herself struggling.

She explained: “Sometimes it’s very difficult to manage, even budget, especially when the price of food, gas and electric is not cheap anymore. It’s so hard to pay rent and survive at the moment. People should not just be surviving though, they should be able to live and have a life.”

Marcella never expected to have to use a foodbank, but when her benefit support of Employment Support Allowance (ESA) was switched to Job Seekers Allowance (JSA), the payment that she so desperately relies on was delayed and she found herself turning to The Trussell Trust for help.

Marcella is very grateful that the foodbank was able to help her through this difficult time, especially for signposting her to another agency, who have been able to provide her with a social worker for some extra support. She explained: “The foodbank gave me faith that there are people who understand and who you can trust. They made me feel comfortable and reassured. I felt a bit ashamed at not being able to support myself but they took the pressure off. The foodbank really helped and was there for me in every way.”

Since then, Marcella’s confidence has improved: “Without their support, I don’t feel like I would have been able to cope. We need to stop judging people and listen to every individual to understand how they got into the situation.”

Marcella is currently focusing on getting her health back on track and is looking forward to the future.