Thousands use foodbank
Almost 2,000 people have been fed by the Rutherglen and Cambuslang Foodbank over the past financial year.
The charity, which also supported a number of families living in fuel poverty, published its annual figures at an AGM on Monday evening.
Almost 2,000 people have been fed by Rutherglen and Cambuslang Foodbank in the past financial year.
Figures revealed by the charity at its annual general meeting on Monday, April 25, show that in the 2015/16 year 1,922 adults and children were fed via the charity’s three-day food parcels.
The vast majority of those seeking support - 1,261 - were from Rutherglen, of which 433 were children.
In Cambuslang 179 adults and 77 children were supported by the service.
A further 263 adults and 121 youngsters received emergency food supplies in Whitlawburn, while the origins of further 13 people were unknown.
Across all areas 1,058 food vouchers, dished out by referral agencies such as social work and schools, were handed in in the past 12 months.
Throughout the year 79 households were given a £25 topup for pay- as- you- go electricity or gas metres, paid for via a £680 donation.
The food bank, which is open four times per week, says while it had no comparative figures to hand, the demand for food, toiletries, baby items and fuel shows no signs of abating.
Ian Robertson, of the Rutherglen and Cambuslang Foodbank committee, said: “It is certainly the case that austerity continues to hit the most vulnerable hardest.
“We know the vast majority of people are coming because they have been sanctioned.
“The reason Rutherglen has such a high number of people attending is because we are so prominent at St Columbkille’s Church, as its on the Main Street.
“We are looking at ways we can increase the knowledge of where we are and what we are doing and now everyone who comes to the food bank will be given business cards to give to their pals, so they can spread the word.”
Statistics for the food bank come in the same week the organisation held a food drive at Morrison’s supermarket in Cambuslang.
The event on Friday, April 22, saw a whopping to 1.4 tons of food collected and £90 in donations.
Mr Robertson says the generosity of local people never ceases to surprise him.
He added: “On Friday a couple took five bags out of their trolley and gave them to us and took away one bag for themselves. You go from that to a wee old pensioner giving you a pack of pasta and that’s just as valuable to us. That is just two stories of many.”
The food drive was one of three held in the past year, while local schools continue to support the food bank, contributing significantly through harvest festivals and class projects.
Food Drive Morrison’s customer Anne McManus, second left, puts some goods into the food bank basket, manned by Gus Smeaton, Maidie Smeaton and Bruce McGarrie