Fallowfield and Withington foodbank warehouse shelves

Withington and Fallowfield foodbank says demand has risen to 119%

  • The cost of living crisis has led to increased demand in Fallowfield and Withington
  • Fallowfield foodbank has become short in supply of certain food items
  • As increasing prices of extra costs grow, foodbank reliance increases

Demand pressures for Withington and Fallowfield Foodbank has risen to 119% over the past few months.

Project manager at Fallowfield and Withington Foodbank, Aaron Burns, said: “Last year we fed up to 3000 people in total. Now we’re on course to feed over 6000 people.”

“We’re now buying extra food from our own pockets because donations are in a plateau. There’s people that would never normally come to the foodbank that have started to come. The demographic of foodbank users is changing, so it just shows that everyone is struggling from prices increasing.”

Project manager at Fallowfield and Withington Foodbank, Aaron Burns.

Fallowfield and Withington foodbank have been struggling with demand since the outbreak of the cost of living crisis.

Burns continued: “In August last year, we were only feeding 104 people so it’s been a massive jump since then. We have four sessions a week where we aim to offer packages that are nutritionally balanced. But it’s becoming expensive to keep this up.”

Aaron Burns also suggested that the reliance on government funds was increasing. And, during time of payment release, there was less need to use the foodbank.

He said: “In March and April demand has slightly decreased. At this time, universal credit payments were released. It just shows when people have money, foodbanks aren’t really needed.”

Running low on supply

The foodbank have run short in supply fruit juice, milk and canned goods.

Image: Fallowfield and Withington Foodbank Twitter

Spokesperson for the Trussell Trust, an anti-poverty charity, said: “food banks across the UK have seen a sharp increase in level of demand. This is because people are struggling to afford the essentials such as heating and water.”

Significantly, foodbank reliance in the North West has risen overall.

Source: Trussell Trust Mid Year statistics: number of emergency food parcels given by the Trussell Trust Foodbanks in April – September 2022.

The Trussell Trust data shows last year, people within the North West received 151,424 emergency food parcels. Second to London, receiving and up to 163,524.

Long-term goal

The Trussell Trust’s long-term goal is to prevent the need for foodbanks as a whole. Reform for the basic rate of Universal Credit is a key aim for the charity. Their mission is to enable those in poverty to afford essential resources.

“Foodbanks should be a temporary tool for people struggling to afford food, poverty should be targeted directly because no amount of food will get you out poverty.”

Aaron Burns, Project manager for Fallowfield and Withington Foodbank.

Burns said: “we are trying to get financial and debt specialists to give advice to the foodbank users. It’s important for us to get the right help for them. A large amount of people here speak different languages, and they don’t know how to access government payments or support.”

The Withington and Fallowfield foodbank function solely off donate from the local neighbourhoods.