Ribble Valley Foodbank appeal to feed the hungry during Coronavirus crisis

While people are panic buying and stockpiling amid Coronavirus fears, a Clitheroe organisation is urging local folk not to forget poor people going hungry in the community.

Tuesday, 10th March 2020, 9:44 am
Updated Tuesday, 10th March 2020, 9:45 am

Jane Chitnis, Ribble Valley Foodbank Manager, has issued a plea for food donations to continue to help the needy who are struggling.

She said: "We know that anyone can reach crisis point and we're here to help when that happens. We have not really seen the effects of the coronavirus problem yet, but we are shorter of food in the warehouse than usual, and I do wonder if we will see a drop in donations – partly because people might be going out shopping less often, and partly because people might be more inclined to keep anything they buy for their own use. We don’t think anyone in our community should have to face going hungry. That’s why we provide three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to us in crisis, however, we are currently running very low on UHT milk, toilet rolls, sugar, sponge puddings, long-life fruit juice, tinned potatoes, instant mash and tinned vegetables."

Ribble Valley foodbank is run in partnership with local churches, led by Clitheroe Christians in Partnership. First opened in July 2013, last year the organisation distributed three day’s food to more than 1,000 people in need in the Ribble Valley. It has two centres, one in Longridge, one in Clitheroe, plus a warehouse in Clitheroe, with 75 volunteers involved in the project. The organisation works very closely with other Christian projects in the community including CAB, CAP Debt Help, Gateway Trust Counselling, two CAP debt advice centres, cookery classes, soup lunches, budgeting courses, job clubs and holidays clubs.

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Jane Chitnis with volunteers Sheila Harrison and Alice Wallis

Jane went on to thank people who continue to support the foodbank. She said: "Thank you to the people of the Ribble Valley who are incredibly generous. We are so grateful for each and every item of food donated. We were overwhelmed with the donations in the run up to Christmas as more people than ever needed to use the foodbank during the festive period. Christmas is a time for giving and sharing and the kind people of the Ribble Valley definitely did just that so thank you once again."

Anyone wishing to donate food items can do so by going to the United Reformed Church in Moor Lane on Monday and Friday between 11am and 1-30pm. For more information on food donation points, please log onto ribblevalley.foodbank.org.uk