Long Sutton Food Larder is part of Christmas Foodbank Appeal
South Holland's second longest-running foodbank has adapted its response to the needs of the community it serves by changing the way it operates.
Long Sutton Food Larder, which originally opened in January 2012 as a satellite centre for Agapecare Foodbank Spalding, has helped hundreds of needy families since the coronavirus pandemic started in March.
Formerly based at The Market House, in Market Street, the foodbank now operates from a portable building near St Mary's Church where donations of tinned food, including fruit, vegetables and meat, pasta, cereals and other non-perishable items can be left in support of this year's Spalding Guardian Christmas Foodbank Appeal.
The Reverend Jonathan Sibley, vicar of St Mary's Church, said: "In March, The Market House closed due to government guidelines and Long Sutton Primary School agreed to take on the foodbank.
"Head teacher Bill Lord developed the idea of a food larder where people could choose the items they needed from various lists.
"That carried on until the summer when we looked at a number of possibilities of renting properties in Long Sutton.
"Then the building company that's been renovating the church for its 850th anniversary offered us a temporary building connected to St Mary's, with a kitchen, water and lighting.
"All the volunteers are from the local community and we're working quite a lot with social services to help families in need."
This year, the foodbank has introduced a Reverse Advent Calendar where people have been invited to put one item of food or toiletries in a box every day in November, with full boxes to be give tofamilies and individuals affected by furlough, redundancy, self-isolation and low income.
Kimberley Ely, coordinator of Long Sutton Food Larder, said: "The community has been fantastic and so far, 80 people have offered to do a Reverse Advent Calendar.
"We all need help at some point in our lives, but it'll be a really tough Christmas for a lot of people who wouldn't ordinarily be in that position.
"Having briefly worked with the homeless in King's Lynn, I think it's important to give something back."
. Donations of food and toiletries can be taken to Sainsbury's in Spalding, Morrisons in Pinchbeck, churches across South Holland or the Lincolnshire Free Press/Spalding Guardian office at 4 Francis Street, Spalding, where you should knock on the door and someone will collect your items.