Below are some staggering extracts from an article which came out this week, written by Natalie Williams from Jubilee+, on the 7th birthday of the Hastings Foodbank. Natalie shares lots of stats and information about the increasing issue of poverty, as well as a powerful plea for political change.
“It used to be that we gave out an average of around 40,000 meals a year – that was the case in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. Now it’s more than 90,000.”
“This is tons and tons and tons of food helping thousands of local people facing crisis situations. These days we’re giving out more than a ton of food every week – and we only open for four hours a week! Almost 40% of the food we’re giving out is going to children.”
“The DWP’s own data, released a couple of weeks ago, shows that absolute poverty is rising and, disturbingly, three of every four children trapped in poverty have a parent who is working.”
“What’s more, Universal Credit is designed to mimic work. That’s the argument behind the five-week wait from making a claim to receiving any money. But it doesn’t mimic work.”
“We are told that if you just work hard enough, you’ll be ok. Maybe that’s true for the powerful, but it simply isn’t true for the poorest at the moment. More and more working people are relying on foodbanks. More children with working parents are facing poverty anyway.”
This is the harsh reality for many working families struggling on low incomes. Despite working, they just can’t afford the basics. We also know that people give up spending on personal care or hygiene essentials long before they run out of money for food.
We can’t change their financial status, but we can alleviate the symptom of hygiene poverty by making basic personal care and hygiene products accessible via charity partners such as Foodbanks.
The Hygiene Bank has been supporting the Hastings Foodbank since December 2018. In this short period of time, we’ve already collected over ½ tonne of hygiene products and distributed these to the local area.