How foodbanks work

Providing short-term emergency food to people in crisis.

Every day people in the UK go hungry for reasons ranging from redundancy to receiving an unexpected bill on a low income. A simple box of food makes a big difference, with foodbanks helping prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems. Food banks can help people get through short term moments of difficulty.

Food is donated

Schools, churches, businesses and individuals donate non-perishable, in-date food to a foodbank. There are also donation points at supermarkets. Shoppers can buy long life items to add to the foodbank donation box at Sainsbury’s West Ealing, Waitrose West Ealing, Tesco Osterley and Tesco Hoover Building.

Food is sorted and stored

Volunteers sort food to check that it’s in date and pack it into boxes ready to be given to people in need.

Professionals identify people in need

Foodbanks partner with a wide range of care professionals such as work coaches, health visitors, social workers and housing officers to identify people in crisis and issue them with a foodbank voucher.

Clients receive food

Foodbank clients bring their voucher to a foodbank centre where it can be redeemed for three days’ emergency food. At many of our centre, clients also have the opportunity to meet with various professionals such as debt advisors, citizen’s advice advisors or people offering legal support.

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