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Horncastle Community Larder is one of the 39 food banks we’re collecting vital supplies for in the build up to Christmas, with our food bank advent calendar.
For over 10 years, they’ve provided the local community with essential food and hygiene products, from tinned veg and dried noodles, to toilet roll and washing powder. Since the pandemic, demand for their services has soared.
Recent rises in fuel prices and cuts to universal credit has only put further strain on the food bank, making your donations even more important.
At the moment, around 80% of the food that goes out is from donations and generally, the group are able to make sure that everyone gets the items they need. However, at the start of the first lockdown the group struggled for supplies and even found themselves unable to send packages to those in need on occasion.
Every year between 2014-2019, the food bank has had to provide twice as many food parcels. In 2020, the beginning of the pandemic, it went up sixfold. Now, in 2021, the demand is still four times more than it was in 2019.
While some food bank users might be in need of specific items, half the parcels that are sent out are to people that have nothing left in their cupboards – this includes things like toothpaste and nappies, too.
Isabel Forrester, Manager at Horncastle Community Larder, said: “I can’t even begin to think what the implications for the community would be if this food wasn’t going out.
“We’re talking about children that would be fed in school, but probably wouldn’t be fed outside of school. People would starve or get into massive debt.”
Our food bank advent calendar outlines specific items to pick up over the 24 days leading up to Christmas and were designed following discussions with local food banks.
Although it fits the traditional advent calendar model, it can act as a helpful guide all year round.
Isabel said: “Picking up the items on the food bank advent calendar will make a massive difference, they’re things that we specifically need around this time of year and don’t typically get donated.
“Not only does it let people know what we need now, it changes habits for the rest of the year – it encourages people to think, ‘they needed deodorant last time so I’ll pick it up this time too.’”
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