Uckfield Foodbank gave emergency food supplies to 578 people in 2015.
The supplies are calculated to last three days and, of the total number distributed 222 went to children, according to Uckfield Foodbank manager Sharon Burt.
The main reasons for people being referred to the foodbank – which can be found at The Source, The Hub, Civic Approach – were problems in receiving benefits, 45%, and low income, 29%.
Donations and volunteers
Over the last year 11,875kg of food has been donated to the foodbank and more than 70 people have volunteered to help with its work.
Local schools and faith groups have provided vital support enabling three days worth of nutritionally balanced food and support to go people in crisis.
Sharon said: “The number of people we have helped is similar to the previous year but it is still too many. More needs to be done so we can continue to see the need for the foodbank decline.
“It is all too easy when you look at figures to forget the real people behind the statistics.
“Recently a client came to the foodbank who was on enforced sick leave and had been experiencing a very difficult time. The client had never needed help before.
“The client later emailed the foodbank saying: ‘I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciated the kindness that I was shown when I went to the foodbank. I felt welcomed and was treated with dignity without an ounce of judgement.’”
Sharon continued: “That’s why the foodbank is so vital. We are very grateful for the ongoing support of the community and hope that one day there will be no need for us in Uckfield.
“Until that day comes, we will continue to offer the best possible service to help local peole facing a crisis.”
• Professionals from statutory and voluntary organisations such as doctors, health visitors, social workers, Citizens Advice Bureau staff, welfare officers, the police and probation officers identify people in crisis and issue them with a foodbank voucher.