Soham Foodbank helps more than 300 in its first year

PUBLISHED: 08:21 10 July 2014

Archant

Soham Foodbank has helped feed more than 300 people struggling with debt in its first year in business.

The town’s foodbank was set up in July last year with the help of Ely Foodbank, which provides support and supplies to the Soham branch – based in Bushel Lane.

When it first opened, volunteers at the Soham branch welcomed just a few customers at a time but the numbers coming to them for help has risen steadily as the weeks and months have passed.

Volunteer Howard Laver says that they now help up to 15 people a week – an increase of about a third in the last six months alone.

He said: “In our first year, we have had 120 individuals come to us for assistance. That represents 185 adults and 130 children. It is possible for us to hand out up to a quarter of a ton of food a week.

“The foodbank is run entirely by an excellent group of volunteers and it is totally reliant upon donations from local individuals and organisations.

“Unfortunately, in the media, poverty tends to be highlighted in urban rather than rural areas. There are key differences between the two areas. Transport costs is the biggest issue as access to job centres, and Citizens’ Advice Bureaus are a real problem.

“The local job centre is based in Ely but the return bus fare from Soham to Ely is around £6.50, which expensive, especially when you need food.

“Our clients come mainly from Soham and the surrounding villages and they can struggle to get to the foodbank if they do not have their own transport.

“Their reasons for coming vary, but generally they suffer from low income, debt and benefit delays.”

If you are interested in volunteering at Ely or Soham foodbanks, contact 01353 662396 or visit http://ely.foodbank.org.uk

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ely Standard visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ely Standard staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ely Standard account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More news stories

Yesterday, 10:35

Today’s meeting of the general purposes committee of Cambridgeshire County Council is preparing the coming year’s budget. The Tory controlled council will approve a rise of 2.9 per cent. Here the leader explains why.

Yesterday, 17:08

Firefighters from Ely, Wisbech, Whittlesey and March were awarded for their innovation, leadership and exemplary service at the annual Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) Excellence Awards.

Yesterday, 15:24

Nursing staff who lobbied MP Steve Barclay, a newly appointed health minister, revealed 425 signed postcards have been delivered to his constituency office from those opposed to the pay cap on wages.

Yesterday, 15:04

An 18-year-old man wanted by police in connection with a kidnapping has been named one of Cambridgeshire’s ‘most wanted’.

Most read stories

Most commented stories

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Ely Standard e-edition E-edition
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter