Foodbanks struggle to meet need
Dannevirke foodbanks are getting more referrals from social agencies and the numbers of people desperate for food off the street into the Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul shops is increasing.
Requests for help varies from a few per week to more than 50 in a month at both food banks.
Events like school holidays have grandparents on a pension struggling to feed their grandchildren and family occasions like a hangı¯ are resulting in an avalanche of requests.
Requests are also for larger family groups with children, and for a longer period. In the past it was a family of four for three days, now it can be seven for seven days.
Foodbanks say rising rents is a cause for the increasing demand, often not leaving enough money to pay for power and food.
Sources of food for the foodbanks are also drying up a little. Watties Cans For Good has four schools involved in Dannevirke and Norsewood, with their children donating cans which are matched with a donation of cans by the company.
The grocery bill to make up the shortfall is often $500-1000 per week for each foodbank. The last food drive supplied both food banks with enough food for six months, which was a huge boost.
A food drive takes place on Sunday August 26 starting 12.30pm with the emergency services patrolling the streets with sirens calling residents to donate to runners.
Plastic bags will not be supplied this year and donors can use their own or any other container.
If you are not at home leave food by the gate or deliver to either store on High Street. Donations must be non-perishable, preferably in cans. Items can include • canned vegetables, fruit, meat, baked beans and spaghetti, soups;
• pasta, rice, noodles;
• tea, coffee,
• toilet paper, nappies, women’s hygiene requirements, laundry detergent. Cans should be labelled “best before” a date not older than six months but “use by” labelled cans which are expired are of no use.
Should the weather be unsuitable the food drive will be postponed until Sunday September 2.
ORGANISER Terry Hynes, Rev Lynda Ellington(Salvation Army) Frances Walshe and Bill Young (both St Vincent De Paul) hold cans donated by To¯ tara College as part of the Watties Cans For Good Programme.
SOME of the food donated during the last food drive in November 2015 is sorted.