A new crowdfunding scheme has been set up to help people in Adur and Worthing who are struggling to afford enough food to get by this winter.
The Fund our Food Banks crowdfunder is calling for donations to support the 3,000 people who need help from food banks in Adur and Worthing every month. Due to the increased cost of living, more people than ever are visiting food banks in the area - many for the first time.
Food banks don’t just support people with food supplies, but also provide clothing, fuel vouchers and access to specialist services such as Citizens Advice. Due to increased take-up many food banks in the area are concerned that they will not have the necessary funds in place. The situation is set to worsen over Christmas, with a report from The Salvation Army predicting that nationally one in six people will need to use a food bank over the festive season.
Both Adur District and Worthing Borough Councils have developed food poverty action plans and pledged funding to support emergency food distribution as part of their plans to help residents with the increased cost of living.
The crowdfunder is a joint project between Adur and Worthing Food Network, Adur & Worthing Councils and Community Works, a local organisation that supports the voluntary sector. Every penny raised will go directly to food banks, with Worthing Soup Kitchen, Worthing Food Foundation, Worthing Vegan Food Bank, Broadwater Support Group and Lancing and Sompting Food Bank all identified as requiring help.
Local restaurateurs are also supporting the crowdfunder and will be encouraging customers to donate while dining out this Christmas. Those signed up so far include Andy Sparsis, owner of Proto Restaurant Group, Alex Coombs, owner of the Perch restaurants in Lancing and Worthing, and MasterChef winner Kenny Tutt, the owner of Bayside Social and Pitch in Worthing.
Cllr Kevin Boram, Adur’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Wellbeing, said: “With food and energy bills continually rising, primarily as a result of the impact on our economy of the war in Ukraine, more people will need help from food banks this winter. Many residents are already generously donating food items, but to meet the increased demand this year our local food banks, who provide not just food, are in need of cash donations to help them meet the wider needs of the most vulnerable people in our community.
“This work compliments our existing outreach work ensuring people receive the right benefits and to assist them getting back into employment.”
Cllr Carl Walker, the Deputy Leader of Worthing Borough Council, said: “Around 12,000 people in Worthing are already struggling to access enough food after years of disastrous central government policies. And with further government spending cuts to come, local food banks that support those in need will be stretched to the limit.
“This crowdfunding scheme is a great example of organisations working together to achieve a joint aim. I’d like to thank the local businesses that have pledged their support and I’m sure their contribution will make a huge difference. We’re all too aware that personal and business resources are tight but we also know the amazing kindness of our community, so please support this if you can.”
Jess Estcourt, the membership and events co-ordinator at Community Works, said: “Community Works provides support for the voluntary and charity sector and we are proud to be hosting the crowdfunder on behalf of the Adur and Worthing Food Network, working alongside our partners to gain the maximum exposure.”
Please visit https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/fund-our-foodbanks to donate. Local businesses can support the project by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.