Ealing Foodbank fed its 100,000th food client at the end of last year. It is the largest in the borough and has operated for eight years, but there are also many smaller foodbanks that grew out of the urgent need revealed by the COVID-19 lockdowns.
Foodbanks, big or small, rely on gifts of food and cash from the community, local churches, temples, mosques, and synagogues. In the lead up to Christmas, they often benefit from an increase in generous donations, however these can drop away in January and February, despite demand from local people remaining high.
The cost-of-living-crisis is hitting some of the borough’s most vulnerable residents hard, with fuel prices and food costs rising and more people are turning to foodbanks for help. Low wages, insecure work, rising inflation, and government cuts to benefits also mean that many struggle to make ends meet.
‘London is one of the wealthiest cities in the world’
Councillor Jasbir Anand, cabinet member for thriving communities, said: “London is one of the wealthiest cities in the world, and it is a national shame that people in Ealing, our friends and neighbours, are struggling to feed themselves and their families.
“No one in our borough should have to rely on charity to feed themselves and Ealing Council is working to fight inequality and help as many people as possible to earn a decent living income.
“As well as the fantastic main Ealing Foodbank, there are lots of smaller charities around the borough that rely on your donations. Amazing projects like the community fridge at Acton Gardens, the West London Islamic Centre, Ealing Soup Kitchen and the Southall Food Hub.
“If you can, please consider giving this month. They need food and cash donations.”
Ealing Foodbank works on a voucher system. Residents in crisis can also ask for help with food and other essential bills from the council’s Local Welfare Assistance team.
A helpful list of charities and projects that supply food to people in crisis is available on the Ealing Families Directory.