CHRISTMAS FOODBANK APPEAL 2017: Lifeline at the centre of our communities

FOOD SHELTER: A volunteer at Sutton Bridge Foodbank with some of the donations made at St Matthew's Church.  Photo by Tim Wilson.  SG281117-132TW.
FOOD SHELTER: A volunteer at Sutton Bridge Foodbank with some of the donations made at St Matthew's Church. Photo by Tim Wilson. SG281117-132TW.
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There is some dispute as to where and when the concept of foodbanks, including those supported by the Spalding Guardian’s annual Christmas appeal, first started.

Some credit retired American businessman John Van Hengel who volunteered at a soup kitchen in the late 1960s and, whilde doing so, approached grocery stores nearby to ask for donations of food to feed hungry people in the city of Phoenix.

COMMUNITY EFFORT: Food hampers being packed at St Matthew's Church, Sutton Bridge, during the 2016 Christmas Foodbank Appeal.  Photo supplied.

COMMUNITY EFFORT: Food hampers being packed at St Matthew's Church, Sutton Bridge, during the 2016 Christmas Foodbank Appeal. Photo supplied.

There is also a belief that Frenchwoman Sister Cécile Bigot brought the concept over to Europe in 1984 after hearing about a foodbank that operated in Canada.

In the UK, there are more than 400 foodbanks in places like Deeping St James, Holbeach and Sutton Bridge where, altogether, more than 4,000 meals have been served so far this year.

Darren Fawcett, of Agapecare Foodbank Spalding where about 90 food parcels have been given to individuals and families in need so far this year, said: “We’ve been quite busy so we’re running short of the 600 food parcels we received through last year’s appeal.

“The Universal Credit benefit system (for people out of work or on low incomes) has thrown everything up in the air as some people have found it harden than before to get payments,

We’ve been quite busy so we’re running short of the 600 food parcels we received through last year’s appeal

Darren Fawcett, of Agapecare Foodbank Spalding

“So it may have an effect on the average number of food parcels we give out which is why we feel ready for this year’s appeal donations.”

• You can bring food, festive goods and toy donations to Agapecare Foodbank at The Lighthouse Church, Haverfield Road, Spalding, or The Market House, Market Street, Long Sutton.

Donations can also be taken to St Mary and St Nicolas Church, Spalding; All Saints Church, Moulton; St Mary’s Church, Whaplode; All Saints’ Church, Holbeach; St Mary’s Church, Long Sutton; St Matthew’s Church, Sutton Bridge; St Mary’s Church, Sutterton; Priory Church, Deeping St James; and St Guthlac’s Church, Market Deeping.

You can also go to Sainsbury’s in Spalding; Morrisons in Pinchbeck and The Deepings School in Deeping St James and our reception in The Crescent, Spalding.

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