As reported by Manchester Evening News, last month we opened our doors for the first time at No. 93 Wellbeing Centre in Harpurhey. The opening of this site was indicative of how foodbanks are having to expand their provision, to provide support for the growing number of people who rely on them. In north Manchester more people than ever were needing our support, with over a quarter of our food parcels being supplied to the wards of Charlestown, Cheetham, Crumpsall, Harpurhey, Higher Blackley, Miles Platting, Newton Heath, and Moston, some of whom were travelling up to six miles to reach our site in Ardwick. We had hoped that with our new site, we would be better equipped to support the needs of our community, and make their access to food that bit more accessible.
In the month that we have been hosting weekly foodbank sessions at No. 93 Wellbeing Centre, we have distributed 66 emergency food parcels. This is the equivalent of just under 600 meals. For the people that have been using the foodbank, many have reported that low income is the reason they have needed to visit us due to reasons such as job losses, unexpected bills and payments that needed to be made, and having little money left over after bills and housing costs have been met. In the near future, we hope to extend the support we provide, by building links with local organisations, to support the people who use our foodbank with the issues that have impacted on their finances.
Whilst we have been welcoming the people who use our foodbank, we have also welcomed a new team of volunteers, who will be assisting members of staff in the provision of food parcels. Our volunteers are the backbone of the foodbank, and we would not be able to provide food parcels to our clients without them. Equally important in our provision of support is the amazing work our hosts at No. 93 do. They host a number of groups aimed at providing activities for the local community, such as Health Walks, and a Gardening Club. If you want to get involved with any of these activities, please email [email protected] for more information. A huge thank you to both our volunteers and No. 93 Wellbeing Centre!
Our final thanks goes to all of our generous donors, who, without your continued support, we would not have been able to open up this accessible option to our north Manchester community. ASDA Harpurhey are hosting a donation point in their store, to provide much needed long life food items to restock our No. 93 food supply, and donors are more than welcome to drop off donations to us directly at No. 93 Wellbeing Centre on Thursdays between 10am-12pm.
If you need support with an emergency food parcel, please contact [email protected] for more information on how you can be referred to our service.