Falkirk Foodbank stays put for now

Falkirk Foodbank is staying at its current location for now
Falkirk Foodbank is staying at its current location for now

Falkirk Foodbank is staying in place for the next few years as it carries on its vital role in the community.

It had been reported the food bank, which is located in Tamfourhill, was looking to expand its premises to meet growing demand but that is not the case according to local representatives.

Chairman Alastair Blackstock said: “There are four units in a row here in Tamfourhill and we are housed in three of them. We have been using them for the past couple of years and it’s not going to get any bigger.

“We were just trying to make a bit more space for the food we are receiving. No one wants food banks getting any bigger in this day and age. You would rather see them declining - I think that would be a good sign.

“We want to keep the food bank where it is and it looks like we will be able to for the next two or three years.”

Falkirk Council confirmed the premises which currently stores the food is not to be expanded, but it will be in the hands of the food bank organisers and volunteers for the foreseeable future.

A spokesperson said: “We are working closely with the food bank and are in discussions about extending the lease on their current premises in Tamfourhill.”

Last month Grangemouth and Bo’ness Citizens Advice Bureau stated it had seen a shocking rise in the number of people it referred to food banks.

During the course of 2012/13 the CAB made a total of two referrals to food banks and over the course of 2013/14 this grew to 56 referrals – an astonishing increase of 2700 per cent.

The frightening facts and figures were contained in the CAB’s annual report.

CAB manager Bill Palombo said: “Welfare benefit enquiries now represent 50 per cent of all enquiries. If I could find one statistic that best sums up the effect it is having it would be referring 56 people for food parcels in 2013/14 compared to two referrals in 2012/13.”

Falkirk Foodbank currently has around 50 volunteers, many of them helping out several days every week to make up the food parcels which provide three days-worth of emergency supplies for people who are struggling to make ends meet.

Food is donated by schools, churches, businesses, individuals, or through supermarket collections, sorted and packed into boxes, then stored in the warehouse ready for use.

The food is then taken to various distribution centres, where it is made up into food parcels for clients.

Visit www.falkirk.food
bank.org.uk for more.