UK cost of living crisis: York Foodbank sees steep rise in referrals

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YORK Foodbank has reported a 30 percent increase in referrals since the end of 2021.

The board’s manager, Adam Raffell, said there has been a “continued increase” in the number of people referred to the board in York since last November.

He said more people are also unable to cook meals.

If food packaging contains items that need to be reheated, people will be asked if they can do so.

Adam said, “Previously people have said they can cook it, but they’re not sure if they will be able to in the future.”

He said the main reasons for this were the increase in the Ofgem price cap and the lifting of the Universal Credit increase, which came after most of the pandemic had ended.

Those unable to prepare meals will be referred to York City Council for assistance with utility bills.

Adam worries that this problem will not go away any time soon.

“The concern is what will happen in the coming months,” he said.

He spoke to The Press just days after we launched our Your Money Matters campaign – our offer to help you overcome the cost of living rise.

We make it our mission to look after your money by offering money-saving offers, contests, giveaways and insightful stories from your community about how this cost of living crisis is impacting our readers, like you.

Adam added that calling the current situation a “crisis” is very accurate.

He said: “We don’t know where it’s going to go. York City Council is doing what it can.

“There needs to be a national cooperative movement for people who live in poverty on a daily basis.

“It’s not right that people are fighting right now.”

Adam explained that people who feel they need access to a food bank should not hesitate to reach out to them.

He said the first step for anyone concerned about food is to call toll-free on 0808 208 2138 to speak to a trained citizen adviser.

“For any of us who have reached a point where we are concerned about the increased pressure and just can’t save anymore, the best advice is always to seek help as early as possible.

“Citizens Advice York (0808 278 7895) works tirelessly to help local people, as do the Council’s Local Area Coordinators, whose contact details are posted on the Council’s website for each community.

“Within the Foodbank distribution points, which are housed in five welcoming local churches, we have a close partnership with the Peasholme Charity who also help people access the Foodbank.

“I would also just like to add how incredibly grateful we are to all of those who continue to be so generous in supporting people who are struggling in communities around York.”

He added that the food bank is currently short of items including canned fruit, squash, fruit juice, biscuit and powdered milk.

Anyone concerned about food should speak to a trained citizen adviser on freephone 0808 208 2138.

If you would like to share your crisis experiences, if you are a charity or organizations offering support or a business overcoming the odds of surviving, please contact The Press by email: [email protected]

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