Warrington Foodbank Opens New Unit To Deal With Growing Demand

Warrington Foodbank project manager David McDonald was joined by Mayor Cllr Wendy Johnson at the official opening of the new unit

Warrington Foodbank has opened a new unit after being forced to double in size to cope with growing demand.

The charity offers a lifeline to desperate residents in crisis.

A new facility yards away from its current site at Tanning Court industrial estate close to the town centre officially opened last Friday.

The foodbank launched in the town in 2012 and is now armed with almost 130 volunteers.

The organisation distributed a staggering 79 tonnes of food last year following a remarkable level of donations from selfless residents across the borough – it marked a 14 per cent increase from 2017.

Residents who were provided with food vouchers over 2018 received around 72,730 meals, with around 35 per cent going to children.

But project manager David McDonald emphasised that the opening of the new site is not a cause for celebration.

He said: “When companies or charities expand because they need to, sometimes it is a cause for celebration, but this is definitely not a celebration.

“We have been forced into this situation because of the increasing need from the people of Warrington.”

Mr McDonald hailed the generosity of residents as the charity enters its busiest time of year.

However, with a general election on the horizon, the manager of the non-political organisation believes foodbanks will be needed throughout the next Parliament at a minimum, regardless of which party comes out on top in a vote.

He also expressed fears over the ‘stigma’ associated with the service.

“It bothers me to be honest that there are people we are missing because of pride and dignity,” he added.

“This new distribution centre is open and friendly.

“We are trying to take away people’s fear of being here – we try and take away that stigma.

“We are there to help and signpost people to other agencies, not just to give out food.”

The new unit includes a cafe-style area.

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